This all-action, no-nonsense, somewhat brainless thriller relies so heavily on wham-bang OTT effects that the actors - and the script - almost play second fiddle. Released in 2002, subtle it ain't, but if that's your thing, you're in for a terrific, knuckle-busting ride.
Directed by Hong Kong action director Corey Yuen and written and produced by Luc Besson, The Transporter stars Jason Statham as Frank Martin - an ex-British Special Forces operative who now uses his skills to fund his rather laid-back French Riviera lifestyle. Martin's strategy is simple - for a price, he will transport anything anywhere, with no questions asked. Martin has just three rules - the deal never changes, there are no names and he never looks in the package. Normally he manages to stick to these rules. There's a prime example early on - when Martin's driving a getaway car with four bank robbers on board, he shoots one of them dead because the deal stipulated three. Nice.
But Martin foolishly breaks rule three when a package he's transporting starts to move. Curious, he opens the large bag, to reveal beautiful and rather feisty Lai (Qi Shu). It's a major turning point as Martin becomes embroiled in a world where smuggled Chinese immigrants are sold into slavery and the gang want Lai back and him dead.
Be prepared for utterly unrelenting action, with plenty of martial arts fights, car chases and even a parachute drop onto a moving truck. Statham is reasonable as the laconic but tough-nut hero, while Shu Qi combines beauty and grit.