Jean Reno is one of my favorite actors. I’ve been to Japan and like the crazy Zoku girls. So a movie where Jean Reno is a French supercop who finds out he has a daughter with a Japanese flame who’s passed on should be perfect for me, right?
Written by Luc Besson’s factory of monkeys with typewriters, and directed by a a Monsieur Ratner type who’s body of work is the 3 Taxi sequels, we have a script so flimsy that I couldn’t keep my eyes open. Those that know me might say my eyes are barely open when I’m surprised, but let me reiterate- a goofball cop movie where Reno punches transvestite bank robbers across the room like Arnold Schwarzenegger strutting onto the set of Dog Day Afternoon in an outtake from Last Action Hero should never be boring. And sadly, Wasabi is.
The joke bit of title is that Yumi is supposed to be like the condiment, spicy Japanese horseradish paste that’s surprisingly colorful and potent. The problem is, she’s just a typical annoying teenager. The actress was 21, so fap away, but she was pretty unappealing in this one. It was a film I wanted to like, but couldn’t be bothered with; I’d seen it all before, and Jean was really phoning it in. This wants to be a comedy version of Leon: The Professional but Hirosue doesn’t have Natalie’s acting chops, and there’s little chemistry between the trio of Reno, his daughter, and his partner Momo playing fish out of water in Tokyo.