Director: Frank Coraci
Writer: David n Titcher, David Benullo, David Andrew Goldstein (Screenplay) Jules Verne (Novel)
Starring: Jackie Chan, Steve Coogan, Cecile de France, Robert Fyfe, Jim Broadbent, Ian McNeice
Plot: To win a bet, an eccentric British inventor, beside his Chinese valet and an aspiring French artist, embarks on a trip full of adventures and dangers around the world in exactly eighty days.
Tagline – Let your imagination soar.
Runtime: 2 Hours
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Story: Around the World in 80 Days starts when eccentric inventor Phileas Fogg (Coogan) finds his latest valet leaving him, just when robber Lau Xing (Chan) lands in his home, Fogg wants to present his latest invention, but is considered the laughing stock of the British Science world with the minister Lord Kelvin (Broadbent) baiting him into a wager.
The wager is to travel around the world in 80 days where he is joined by Lau Xing who is looking to get home to China to return a stolen artifact from his village, a journey that will see the pair meet inspiring artist Monique La Roche (France) and face enemies in every country trying to stop Fogg winning the bet.
Thoughts on Around the World in 80 Days
Characters & Performances – Phileas Fogg is an eccentric inventor that has been coming up with ideas for years, most challenge the normal science, while others are more for convenience, he wants to be part of the British science committee, a place where his ideas aren’t accepted. He ends up getting caught up in a bet to go around the world in 80 days to take the role of minister of science or never be allowed to invent again, the journey will take him to new countries, giving him a chance to experience new cultures, ones he never would have experienced in England. Steve Coogan is great in this role, he brings us the stuck up version of Fogg to life, while slowly showing the changes he goes through during his adventure. Lau Xing has stolen back a statue from the bank of London, which will see him being hunted around the city, he joins Phileas on his adventure to return home, fighting off the enemies along the way, telling the stories others would never believe. Jackie Chan does steal the show, needing to carry the action comedy side of the film throughout the film. Monique La Roche is a French artist that joins the adventure to escape her boring life in Paris, taking her to see new places to get new experiences in what she can draw. She is the plucky member of the team, always pushing Fogg to come out of his shell. Cecile de France is great to watch through this film too as the three leads are wonderful together. The supporting characters including the upper-class British science committee that look down on everyone, the many different people they meet along the way, some help, some get in the way, as well as the warlord trying to stop Lau Xing from getting back home for her own gain. Each role is played well, and it does become a spot the big name at times.
Story – The story here follows an eccentric inventor as he looks to win a bet to travel around the world in 80 days to become the minister of science or never be allowed to invent again, an adventure which will see him learn more about life. We know the Jules Verne classic novel, here we get a spin that will put a bigger focus on Passepartout, being Lau Xing, needing to return home for honour, giving them more enemies along the way, it does become a more action packed story, but has the message of trying to find enjoyment out of life, by taking a chance.
Themes – Around the World in 80 Days does give us plenty of action from Jackie Chan and his fighting styles, each using the different environment for added ideas and comedy at times. Steve Coogan does bring the straight-faced humour at times, with plenty of poking fun at the British from yester year.
Final Thoughts – Around the World in 80 Days is a fun, enjoyable adventure movie that will get laughs and have plenty of action along the way.