‘The Tourist’ (2011): A Sophisticated, Romantic Caper

February 17, 2012 7 Comments

If I had to say, the guess would be this movie draws in crowds because of its two stars. Critics don’t seem all that into this script, and to be perfectly honest with you, neither was I. Entertaining, yes, but The Tourist isn’t that inventive.

The Tourist (2011) Film Review

Healing a broken heart takes time, as does the recovery before you can love again. Then for some, the most logical solution might be to run. Frank Tupelo (Johnny Depp) is in just this position. A laid-back American math teacher, he suffers from heartbreak, and instead is now traveling alone across Europe alone. Presently he’s traveling from Paris to Venice by train when his life instantly changes.

‘The Tourist’ (2011): A Sophisticated, Romantic Caper. A review of the film with Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie. Text © Rissi JC

A beguiling woman sits down across from him, and engages him in flirtatious conversation. Her name is Elise (Angelina Jolie). Turns out Elise has more than one secret, including a shadow in the form of Inspector Acheson (Paul Bettany), an investigator who believes Elise is the key to their investigation of a dangerous man called Pierce. Now, like Frank, Elise finds herself with the same choice, she must also run.

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For a minute, let’s go back to the cast because pairing these two is interesting. It’s a challenge to think of Depp as anyone other than the rum-drinking Captain Sparrow whom he wholly embodies while Jolie (her accent slips here and there) has never been an actress I care much for. Seeing Depp as a professor is just so off from his normal roles, but he fills the shoes of the character well.

If I’m not careful, when I review these, I can go down a rabbit hole of trivia. The Tourist is one I did. The trivia of it reveals that the early production vets a number of different actors and directors, including Sam Worthington and Charlize Theron while Jolie only took the part because of its quick shoot (reportedly). The supporting cast is equally impressive, and includes Timothy Dalton and in the shadows of everyone, Rufus Sewall. I like how well everyone plays off each other. It may not be the cleverest, but this is a good movie.

‘The Tourist’ (2011): A Sophisticated, Romantic Caper. A review of the film with Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie. Text © Rissi JC
‘The Tourist’ (2011): A Sophisticated, Romantic Caper. Angelina Jolie & Johnny Depp co-star in this entertaining film. #Movies #Romance #FWArchives Click To Tweet

The costumes are gorgeous. Jolie looks every inch the sophisticated woman in her ballroom attire, and Depp the dapper gentleman. This is kind of a film that may at first appear a wallflower. But once you’ve seen it, I think you’ll find yourself easily caught up. The back and forth of these characters makes for interesting objectives. Another good quality is shooting on location which allows this to have a realistic atmosphere. There’s some witty dialogue, and I treasure the final bits of banter between lovers; unforgettable as it may be, it is cute. Even the minor instance of foul language, which attempts to spoil a special moment, barely succeeds.

After my initial watch, I did see this again, and do enjoy the movie even more. It’s exciting, although not in the traditional sense. Ignore the blasé reviews, promotional material and telling title, and give the film a chance. It won’t reinvent the genre wheel, but its red herring plots and awareness of intrigue is fun. I’ll be the first to admit this movie isn’t something I’d expected to find so absorbing. But it’s just, fun.

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You can find The Tourist digitally on Amazon Video


Content: two f-words are made use of, plus ba**t**d. Violence was the second “reason” behind the PG13 rating which involves some gunfire [three villains are shot in the back] and tense escapes. Frank and Elise share some passionate kisses and implications suggest Elise just broke off a live-in relationship. The camera glimpses Elise undressing [her undergarments are visible]. Surveillance jokes about whether or not a target is wearing underwear as the camera zooms into her back. Much of Elise’s wardrobe is form-fitting with plunging necklines.

About Rissi JC

amateur photog. #bookblogger. downton abbey. inspys. internet-photo-shy. writer. the aspiration is to someday write professionally. a girl can dream, right?

Rissi JC

amateur photog. #bookblogger. downton abbey. inspys. internet-photo-shy. writer. the aspiration is to someday write professionally. a girl can dream, right?

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7 Comments

  • Charity February 17, 2012 at 11:54 PM

    I watched this with a friend a couple of months ago — I figured out the twist quite early on, but still enjoyed it. It was cute and it was fun. But then, I like Angelina Jolie, so I was bound to enjoy it.

    The costuming IS gorgeous. I'm not all that surprised. Midway through I said "I bet Colleen Atwood designed these costumes." Got to the end and yup, she had. She's probably my favorite designer in Hollywood — she has designed everything from Alice in Wonderland and Sleepy Hollow to Chicago. Gorgeous sense of fashion.

  • Rissi February 18, 2012 at 4:41 AM

    Gosh! But you seem good at pegging the twists – it just isn't fair, girl! =)

    I LOVED this movie. Mom picked it to re-watch a week ago, and I came to love it a bit more. It's exciting (even if it isn't in the traditional ways) and holds the viewer captive. Not a huge fan of Jolie, but I've liked what she's been in that I have seen.

    Colleen Atwood is a very familiar name, so I am sure I've seen a lot of her work, too; Alice in Wonderland being one of them. You said it right: she does have a sense of fashion that is untouchable. =)

  • Charity February 18, 2012 at 5:08 PM

    I don't know whether to blame it on being a writer or a girl who grew up reading mystery novels. I just know that half an hour in I said, "You know, if I was writing this…" and it turns out the screenwriter had the same idea!

    If it makes you feel any better, Carissa gave me a dirty look when I announced my suspicions. I don't think she appreciates my skill either. ;)

    It is fun. I should rent it again.

    Colleen Atwood is a costuming genius. Sometimes, I watch movies just to look at her designs. She's done Snow White & the Huntsman, The Tourist, Alice in Wonderland, Public Enemies, Nine, Sweeney Todd, Memoirs of a Geisha, Lemony Snicket, Chicago, Sleepy Hollow, and even Little Women. I just… I want to marry her costumes. =D

  • Funmilayo February 19, 2012 at 1:59 AM

    I think I might watch this

  • Rissi February 19, 2012 at 2:02 PM

    Charity – I can guess where the plot is going sometimes (just did with the S3 finale of Bones… but I'll admit I had some indicators of it prior to seeing it), but not every time. In this case, I just assumed it would play out how it (the plot, the title) suggested.

    Well… I don't know about Carissa but since I don't care about spoilers (usually), I am always good knowing the end. =)

    You should rent it again – as I said, I just loved it more the 2nd time through.

    Colleen has won and/or been nominated for some prestigious awards, too. (I think!) She definately deserves it. Knowing that "Huntsman" is from the producers of "Alice," it doesn't surprise me that she will be designing the costumes again – YAY! More loveliness from the mind of Colleen Atwood. =)

    Funmilayo – yes do! It was a lot of fun. =)

    Thanks for dropping by my blog. Visit anytime.

  • Anonymous February 20, 2012 at 10:20 PM

    I was surprised how much I enjoyed this movie.

  • Rissi February 21, 2012 at 2:15 AM

    I really liked this one, Jen despite not being a fan of either stars. I like Johnny as Captain Jack and that is about it. ;D

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