The Tuxedo (2002)

Synopsis: A fast-driving New York cabbie named Jimmy Tong  (Jackie Chan) is hired by a top secret organization to chauffeur suave secret agent Clark Devlin (Jason Isaacs) around town. When Devlin is injured in an attempt on his life, he hands Jimmy the controls to his $2 billion Tuxedo, which can make Jimmy into a world class spy, capable of  walking up walls, singing like James Brown and dancing the mamba. Impersonating Devlin, Tong steps in with new agent Del Blaine (Jennifer Love Hewitt) to crack the case Devlin was working on: a mad bottled water tycoon wants to poison the earths’ water supply so everyone will have to buy his water. (Although now I'm wondering, if he poisons the whole earth's water supply, WHERE is he going to get water to bottle?)

Debbie’s Review: Let me first say, as a devoted Jackie fan, that Jackie was absolutely charming in this film. His acting was more than adequate to the script, he looked great, and his English sounded better than ever. The rest of the cast, as well, did a fine job. A lot has been said about Jennifer Love Hewitt, pro and con: I thought she was funny and a good match for Jackie. I thought the screen chemistry between the two of them was quite nice.  If you like her, you’ll like her in this film. If you don’t like her, well…… 

Okay, that was the good stuff. Now for the rest. The story was silly, but I didn’t mind that. It was just light fantasy/scifi/entertainment, part Mr. Gadget, part James Bond. But here’s what I did mind: the tone was set right in the beginning, when the credits start out with a lovely waterfall and stream into which a deer delicately steps for a drink…then pisses in the stream. I knew we were in trouble. 

I won’t waste any more words here. I hated this film. The humor was tacky and juvenile, and completely beneath Jackie. There was no real wit or intelligence to it at all. Just cheap, obvious 7th grade level boob and ass jokes.  If Jackie wants to talk dirty in a movie, then at least let him do it like a man, not like a 12 year old. If he wants to mess around with girls, then for pity’s sake, let him have a grown up relationship with a woman. He’s nearly 50 years old…all the childish innuendo and boob jokes are getting embarrassing. Someone let this man grow up! 

I think one problem here is that the writers think Americans love Jackie partly for his innocence, and so it’s a great joke to take a simple, naive character and put a bunch of trash that he doesn’t understand in his mouth. This film spends far too little time capitalizing on this man’s enormous talent, charm and ability, and instead capitalizes on his inability to understand American culture and customs, and tries to make a fool of him. 

Jackie said in an interview with Matt Lauer of the Today show that he was embarrassed doing parts of this film. He should be embarrassed. When he launched into his highly promoted James Brown routine, I was prepared to be dazzled. Instead I felt queasy: at one point he goes up to a table of guests and starts shaking his butt in a woman’s face…and then stands there and shakes it, and shakes it, and shakes it, for what seemed like eternity. Just as  I started to wonder “Is this EVER going to end?” he turned and started shaking it in her date’s face…and shaking it….and shaking it…and shaking it. I wanted to cry for him.  He has also been saying in interviews that he doesn't like this movie. Well, Jackie, isn't it time you stopped making films you don't believe in, and get back to your own unique artistic vision?

My other problem with this film was the wire-work. The special effects were okay, but the wires were badly done, I thought. I couldn’t see any of Jackie’s natural grace, quickness or agility. He just looked like a puppet on a string. Jackie’s been saying for a couple of years now that he wants to try special effects. But computer graphics and bluescreen are one thing, being yanked around on cables is another. For my money, I’d rather see Jackie do a toned-down version of what he does best, maybe against a blue screen or with some CGI…but being jerked around like a bad high-school production of Peter Pan is not what I pay him for. 

The parts of the film I really enjoyed were the parts where Jackie was just being a normal guy: driving his cab, trying to ask a woman out for a date, working for his boss. I’d rather see him become merely an actor, because I think he is a fine one, than to be a bad charicature of what he once was. 

But you know what? The audience loved this film. They roared at all the potty humor. They clapped when it was over (I felt like clapping too, but that’s a different matter). I never thought I’d say this, but I will be sad if this film is a big success. I want to support Jackie’s career, but I don’t want to see any more of this kind of degrading garbage. 

Score: 4/10

Reader Reviews

KUNG FU SUPERCOP's Review: The tuxedo was not that bad of a movie like some people might think.Its about this taxi driver that is a loser and gets a job driving a clark devlin around.Devlin gets sent to the hospital and jackie takes his tuxedo.The tuxedo is magic it helps him deafeat bad guy's and has cool other featurettes.He meets a scientist(jeniffer love hewitt0 and they stop this other man from dehaidrating everyone(or something like that i saw this a while back so i dont remember some of it).A lot of people say his newer movies stink but they are just as good as his 90s 80s and 70s films.

Score: 7/10

???'s Review: The tuxedo was pretty good.Its about this loser taxi driver who likes this girl.One day he gets to drive for Clark Devlin.He finds a tuxedo and now he has superpowers.He meets a scientist too.He is trying to save the world from dehaidration.The tuxedo was not jackies best but most of his 200s movies are not as good as the older ones.Rush hour 2,shanghai knights,accidental spy,shanghai noon were all pretty good.the medallion was okay and the tuxedo is just a bit better.Lets hope that his newer movies (new police story,around the world in 80 days etc)are better


Jackie_DrunkenMaster's Review: To my I have liked much this film, porqué are not many fights, does not mean that she is bad, humor is very good and the fights also. What I have liked more has been when Jackie dances like James Brown. Visit my web!!!

Score: 9.9999/10

FAN-OF-CHAN's  Review: Very Bad Movie. This is all I can say about this movie. Many fans will disagree but if you have seen other Jackie Chan movies (even the one's with special effects) you will understand that this movie is missing all the essence of a Jackie chan movie. This does not make it a better change but the worst. This movie gives the wrong idea about jackie chan to the new audience. Many new audience who think this is what a typical Chan movie is like, will be dissapointed. I had to watch 10 of his older movies to get over the dissapointment I had with this one. If you want to prove yourself that even the most experience Jackie Chan can make bad movies, watch this one. I hope he makes better movies in the future.

Score: 3/10

Brendan's Review: I finally got to see this film, as it has just been released here in Australia. It's far from Jackie's best work, but it's an okay effort that possibly could have been a little better in a few ways. The action sequences are great to watch, keep you interested and will please most action fans such as myself. Jackie is quite amusing again, even if some of the jokes and a lot of the plot aspects are fairly predictable. The scene where he first experiments with the suit is fantastic, and Jackie plays it off brilliantly with his expert comic timing. The basis of the story is very familiar but Jackie's charm, easy-going nature and likeability help the film along in some of its flatter spots. The finale is also very funny and a little unpredictable as well, which was a pleasant surprise. Jackie's English still leaves a little to be desired, but the man is trying his heart out here, so I can more than forgive him. The supporting cast is competent. Jennifer Love Hewitt tried hard, and deserves credit for it. Sure, she can be annying on occassions (though in some cases it fits her character well), but she puts in a commendable effort. She looks great, and while she goes to extreme lengths to excite the viewer at times with her facial expressions and mannerisms in particular, it's a pretty standard role that not many would be able to do a whole lot more with. James Brown's appearance is well-placed and hilarious, particularly Jackie's performance of one of the Godfather of Soul's hits. Some of the comedy is fantastic, while a few of the jokes are a little misdirected, but there's some laughs for everyone in this film anyway. Overall, it is an entertaining action/comedy with a sci-fi element incorporated into it. It's fairly enjoyable and a decent method of filling 90 minutes. It is nothing exceptional whatsoever, and rather formulaic, but I just love the Chan Man's films and he's always exciting to watch.

Score: 6/10

NickV.'s Review:

Supporting Actors

Jennifer Love Hewitt-Throughout the movie she complains a lot about Jackie Chan. She also uses her body to get what she wants. Except for those two things, she does not do anything else.
The scene where Jennifer Love Hewitt tells exactly what she is drinking and what year it was was just stupid. Her character in the film is supposed to be well educated but with the film showing her in those outfits and her showing off her chest every second, the audience just cannot take her seriously.

Jason Isaacs- He is also one of the main characters "Clark Devlin". He does the best he can in his appearance.

Debi Mazar- She plays Jennifer Love Hewitt's friend "Steena". She is in the movie to satisfy the males. She does not have anything sophisticated to say through the movie. And the camera focuses on her body most of the time.

Ritchie Coster- He plays the movie's main villain "Diedrich Banning". I think the movie did a good job at making his character seem evil. But the problem is that his sidekick is not serious and creates many problems.

The Comedy: The scene where Jackie Chan mentions "Wet Dream" is just not that funny, and some people will get offended. Another scene that was ridiculous is when a skateboard with a bomb attached to it was chasing Jackie Chan and Clark Devlin in the car. It was just below the maturity level, and looked out of place. Jackie Chan does a few famous expressions. One of them is the Asta la vista line by Arnold Schwarzenegger. But off course it didn't impress me. Classic things are only classic once. Another famous line is Tong, Jimmy Tong. An obvious famous line by James Bond. And most of the music in this movie is from James Bond. The scene where Jackie Chan almost gets raped by Banning's fiancé is intended to be mean as a joke, but it is not that funny at all. Also there's a scene where Jackie Chan makes hand signals while its getting projected. It was again suppose to be funny, I did laugh out of pity. The only neat comedy move was when Jackie Chan got another persons party invitation. It was quite original. The scene where Jackie Chan accidentally shoots the wrong person from the rooftop could provide some laughs.

The Action:

The first action scene involves Jackie Chan's character to run away from a bicyclist who he hit with his car door. Nothing spectacular happens in this scene. The only neat short move was when the limousine hit Jackie Chan. Then after the opening there are two car chases involving Jackie Chan. They are actually are quite creative but still failed to impress me that much. Later into the film Jackie Chan has a short action scene where he activates the tuxedo and destroys Clark Devlins house. After that scene is the biggest fight in the entire film which is at the rooftop. Jackie Chan uses a rope in a creative way to beat his attackers. This scene includes almost all the stunts in this film. Jackie Chan falls from the rooftop but then grabs onto the side and climes up to the top. Another good scene is where Jackie Chan grabs onto a panel and travels onto another side. Then there's the slide where Jackie Chan puts his hands and feet against the separate walls and slides down. And the last stunt is where Jackie Chan falls down from a lower floor onto a truck. But the scene keeps going Jackie Chan chases after Jennifer Love Hewitt and then jumps into her car. The Apartment Fight follows. Jackie Chan does a good job with this scene. But I didn?t find it that exiting where he kicks two people with the same leg over and over. Brad Allan doubles for some bad guys here. The ending fight was not exiting at all. Jackie Chan and Banning fight was quite short and didn't provide anything new or good. But afterwards Jackie Chan fights a whole crowd. It started out good but it was not what I expected. It didn't show anything except close ups of Jackie Chan hitting people.

Bruce Lee- Jackie Chan mentions the great master in the opening fight. What else is good in this scene is that Jackie Chan states that not ever chinese person knows martial arts. I guess its good because its true, and I think Jackie Chan is sending out a message that he will not be known for his martial arts forever. He is saying that he wants to do non-martial arts movies.

About Jackie's English: He appears quite fluent now. He still is having trouble with some words and phrases, but he is getting better.

Outtakes: The outtakes were the worse ones I have ever seen in a Jackie Chan film. They only showed Jackie Chan messing up his lines and nothing else.

I didnt not like this movie as a whole. It did have a few memorable bits, but this film was a big mistake.

HomerJ's Review: Jackie's first film after the phenomenal success of RH2 was always going to be closely scrutinised, but I had high hopes for Tuxedo given the interesting premise, which seemed tailored (no pun intended.....okie it was - hehe!) to Jackie's abilites.

However this reeks of mere mediocrity, its by no means a bad movie, just not as good as it should have been. The script was pretty darn lousy - whilst much of it was fairly amusing, there were examples of humor that just didn't work. The butt waving scene as Debbie has mentioned was painful to watch, as was the nauseating scene in the hotel room with the villain's mistress. This humour is aimed towards my demographic and I do like my juvenile comedy - boy do I!!!, but here it just wasn't as funny as I had hoped.

We also have one of the most underwritten bad guys in motion picture history - I honestly can't remember much about him, something to do with silly water schemes and that's about it. There was zero tension in the film because Jackie could defeat this guy with a wet fish. Villains are supposed to be villanous but this guy was just plain dull...

The action scenes were interesting given they incorporated special effects into Jackie's style for the first time. The results were... unspectacular. I think special effects could be advantageous in his films, but they need to be used judiciously, they need to be employed to compliment Jackie who his own special effect rather than compensate or try to replace him. The best sequence is unsurprsingly one where little (if any) effects are used - the rope fight on the rooftop, a nice, intricate clever fight.

Of disappointment as well was that there was not more time given to Jackie and Jason Issacs, their scenes together providing some nice moments, I particualry enjoyed Jackie's impersonation of Devlin - spot on!

The one overriding claim I can make about this film though is that once again, Jackie alone makes up for its weaknesses, he gives arguably his best performance in English and is as charming and vulnerable as ever, that smile and his superb ability to act with his face being his tradmark tools of success. I am however geting tired of seeing him compensate for other areas that fail to meet expectation. Now that Jackie is finally part of the elite and is established box-office gold, he should use his new found status to surround himself with a better class of production. I would dearly love to see him be supported by some heavyweight actors or directed by Spileberg etc. He surely now has the chance to push for more creative control or take a risk with a more dramatic part, I don't think he should allow himself to end up being forever typecast in these culturally mismatched/fish out of water roles that whilst he is certainly good at, don't give him the opportunity to expand his horizons as an actor.

Jackie is very good in the Tuxedo, but he is better than this, and I hope Hollywood can wake up and realise this.

Score: 5/10

Rzelwar's Review: This a good movie not the best Jackie movie but good. One of the problems is that it didn't have enough action like his other movies. But it does have some good comedy and a pretty good ending fight. You should see this movie in theaters before buying it.

Score: 8/10

Marsha's Review:  I'd heard from the start that The Tuxedo would not be the typical Jackie Chan film, so I went into the theater with an open mind, expecting only to be entertained. I got what I expected.

The Tuxedo is geared for the 11 to 16 year-old boys of mainstream America, the youngsters who've been raised on MTV's half-naked beauties in not-so-subtly sexy music videos. The opening sequence of the film, where a beautiful deer steps on delicate hooves into a clear hillside stream makes this gearing quite clear. It also makes one re-think the safety and purity of bottled drinking water, which gives us the plot.

Jackie plays Jimmy Tong, a sweet, likable everyman kinda guy who drives a cab. He's girl-shy and has a low self-esteem. The audience is privy to a conversation between him and a friend, who's coaching Jimmy to tell the object of his affection, a lovely woman who works in an art gallery and who he admires from afar, that she's his dream girl. Except Jimmy's so nervous he messes up the line before he actually speaks to the lady face-to-face. Which is good. Jimmy uses an expression which is, uh, juvenile and thankfully forgotten before he enters the art gallery and faces the woman. Jackie's facial expressions and body language perfectly convey Jimmy's distress in his inability to speak coherently to the lady.

His driving, however, is confident and masterful and lands him a job as chauffeur for the suave CSA super-spy, Clark Devlin. Debi Mazar is perfect in her role of procuring Jimmy's services for Devlin. She gives Jimmy a list of rules he must obey, one of which is that he must never speak directly to Devlin. Devlin in turn tosses out all rules but one: never touch his tuxedo.

Jimmy studies Devlin's every move, trying to emulate his new boss especially in his dealings with women. Devlin takes a liking to Jimmy and even has a special Armani suit made just for him as a gift. That suit appears later in the film.

As you see in the teasers, Jimmy of course ends up wearing the awesome Armani tux when Devlin is injured and hospitalized. Jimmy has no defensive skills except when he's behind the wheel of a car; Jackie's facial expressions when the suit takes over in defense mode are perfect in telling us he has no clue what's happening to him.

Jennifer Love Hewitt's Del Blaine character is sort of the female version of Jimmy Tong. You get the sense she's desperately trying to break through the glass ceiling, to be heard in the male-dominated CSA organization of which she is a junior member. She convinces her superiors she has a clue. She makes contact with Tong who's posing as Devlin and the film takes off with these two playing off each other.

Jackie's Jimmy Tong wins our affection and sympathy quite easily. Jackie's charm and talent carry the character, and could have carried it further if not limited by the juvenile humor of the script and editing of the cut we see in the theater.

Without giving away any more spoilers, let me say that as a rainy-day, popcorn and soda, don't-think-too-much-just-enjoy-yourself kind of movie, The Tuxedo succeeds.

If you can, forget the films Jackie Chan has so masterfully made in the past, especially those he's directed himself, and see The Tuxedo simply to enjoy seeing Jackie Chan in a little different light. He sings and dances and does it well. The action sequences, especially the fights, are incredibly fast; so fast, you'll wish you could rewind and replay them in slow motion to catch what you'll miss in the theater because of the speed at which they blow past you. I found myself wondering just how much of Jackie's trademark incredible choreography ended up on the cutting-room floor for the sake of abbreviating the film to 90 minutes or so.

Overall, I enjoyed the film. I laughed at most of the humor; I'll admit I didn't care for the stuff a 12 or 14-year-old boy might find guiltily hilarious. The "dream" reference in Jimmy's conversation with his friend regarding the lady in the art gallery is what I'm referring to here. Otherwise, The Tuxedo is a fun, no-brain-cells-strained kinda movie. That's OK; I strain those from 8 to 5, Monday through Friday. I personally see a movie, especially a Jackie Chan movie, to be entertained.

And hey, I was entertained! Typical of most of Jackie's movies, plot gets a 4 of 10 ratings points. For acting and talent, the entire cast gets a 9 of 10. Overall, I give The Tuxedo 5/10.

Score: 5/10

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