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Comedy Movies - Taxi

BUY Taxi (dvd cover)
Queen Latifah, Jimmy Fallon
Fox Home Entertainment 2005
97 minutes

Taxi has two strikes going against it. First, it is the American remake of a very successful French movie. Like all other such Hollywood remakes (The Toy with Richard Prior or The Man With One Red Shoe with Tom Hanks) this version is nothing like the highly successful original: the script was written by the bumbling cop buddy movie cliché factory. The second strike against it is this car chase comedy features jimmy Fallon. Fallon is not funny, not engaging, and not interesting in his role. Anyone else could have been better.

Taxi, the American version, features too much story. For some bizarre reason, the movie centers on the Jimmy Fallon bumbling cop character and not the very interesting Queen Latifah New York hack who just got her license and has problems of her own. Queen Latifah is always interesting in her movies and there's something about her that makes you want to watch the movie, this cannot be said about Fallon so with Taxi, you are stuck between a rock and a hard place.

The main problem with this movie is the cars, in this case a supped-up New York cab and a red BMW driven by 4 very luscious bank robbers, are only supporting actors and not given enough screen time. While the original French version focused on the driver and the cars, this version seems intent on focusing on the bumbling cop, his personal relationship with his lieutenant, and every implausibility in the willing suspension of disbelief guidebook.

The only way to enjoy Taxi is to fast forward whenever Fallon is on the screen or not in a car with Queen Latifah and only play the scenes where you see cars racing down NYC. You really got to hope the French owners of the Taxi franchise do not succumb to another few bagfuls of money and sell the adaptation rights to the other 2 French Taxi movies.

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