The Tuxedo (2002) from Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski)

Jackie Chan plays the humble driver of a super-suave secret agent. The spy is the kind of guy who is so debonair and slick that he makes James Bond look like Gilligan. It turns out that all of the agent's powers are in his computer-controlled suit, which allows him to perform flawlessly in many fields of human endeavor, ranging from martial arts to lighting ladies' cigarettes, even encompassing singing and dancing.

I guess you can figure out the rest. The agent goes down, slips into a coma, and Jackie has to fill in with the help of the magical clothing. Of course "The Agency" sends along a real spy to keep tabs on him, but since Jackie's partner turns out to be a brainy agency scientist who begged for her first field assignment, they are both essentially clueless about double-nought spyin'.

Critics generally hated this typical Jackie Chan action comedy. On the other hand, critics don't tend to have much regard for Jackie in general. Unlike many of them, I'm a Jackie Chan fan. He has a great combination of boyish charm, good humor, and creative action. The martial arts scenes in his movies are usually both hilarious and astoundingly athletic. The guy is so graceful that he's even a great dancer, as he proves in this movie when he and his suit have to fill in for James Brown. But as much as I like Jackie in general, I didn't find a lot to like in this film. The James Brown thing isn't bad at all, but that's about the full extent of the film's entertainment value. The action is average, which means it's below Jackie's usual high standard. The jokes flop and even the closing credits, which are usually so good in Jackie's movies, are boring and repetitious, with only one running gag, the fact that Jennifer Love Hewitt couldn't keep a straight face around Jackie.

When the entertainment and action lag, there's no help from the plot and character development. In fact, the narrative is nearly incomprehensible. It appears that the film got edited quite a bit. It seems that about a dozen scenes were either deleted or edited at the last minute, as indicated by two things: (1) the scenes in the DVD "deleted footage" are fully finished in every way, so they must have been eliminated late in the development process; (2) the story would make much more sense if all the "deleted footage" were to be added back into the film. By cutting out or shortening those scenes, the filmmakers spoiled just about every scene which features a minor character. It seems that random people just drop in and out of Jackie's life without any rhyme or reason, and some scenes seem to end in the middle. Actually, the scenes with the major characters aren't much more compelling. The bad guys seem merely silly, not threatening, and we don't even learn anything about the characters played by Chan and Hewitt.

Lacking both pizzazz and coherence, the whole film drags.

DVD info from Amazon

  • Blooper Reel

  • HBO's Special "Tailor Made for Jackie Chan"

  • Deleted Scenes

  • Widescreen anamorphic format. 1.85:1



The Critics Vote

  • General USA consensus: fewer than two stars. Ebert 1.5/4, Berardinelli 2/4, BBC 2/5, Entertainment Weekly C+.

The People Vote ...

  • IMDB summary. IMDb voters score it 5.1/10, Yahoo voters liked it much better at  3.5/5.
  • Box Office Mojo. It grossed $50 million dollars, but it had a $60 million production budget, and another $20-30 million in marketing costs.


The meaning of the IMDb score: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence equivalent to about three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, comparable to approximately two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, equivalent to about a two star rating from the critics. Films rated below five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film - this score is roughly equivalent to one and a half stars from the critics or even less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

My own guideline: A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. C means it will only appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover appeal. (C+ means it has no crossover appeal, but will be considered excellent by genre fans, while C- indicates that it we found it to be a poor movie although genre addicts find it watchable). D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre. F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well.

Any film rated C- or better is recommended for fans of that type of film. Any film rated B- or better is recommended for just about anyone. We don't score films below C- that often, because we like movies and we think that most of them have at least a solid niche audience. Now that you know that, you should have serious reservations about any movie below C-.

Based on this description, this film is a D+. A weak entry in Jackie Chan's career. Not very funny, not a coherent story, not very good character development, and below-average fighting scenes by Jackie's standards.

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