Movies: The Tourist **
(12A, GENERAL RELEASE)
Published 10/12/2010 | 05:00
Although The Tourist is on paper a remake of the 2005 French comic thriller Anthony Zimmer, it seems to be reaching for the playful mood of those 60s spoof capers designed for Audrey Hepburn and a greying Cary Grant.
A number of potential stars came and went before Angelina Jolie and Johnny Depp committed: they've never starred together before, but sound like a bit of a dream team.
In The Tourist, this staggeringly handsome couple collide on a train journey from Paris to Venice. Jolie is Elise Ward, an English woman who is followed everywhere by undercover cops and Interpol.
The reason for this is that she is the former girlfriend of Alexander Pearce, an international man of mystery who disappeared after embezzling a fortune from a vicious gangster called Demitov (Steven Berkoff).
Now everyone is after him and the authorities reckon that sooner or later, he will reveal himself to Elise.
To throw everyone off the trail, Elise strikes up a conversation with a meek American tourist called Frank Taylor (Depp), and when they get to Venice she invites him to stay in her luxury hotel suite.
This is all intended to convince the cops that Frank is really Pearce, but, as things get dangerous, Elise realises she's falling for Frank.
This is all bright and breezy as far as it goes, but the script paints the leading characters so badly that there is nothing for Depp or Jolie to hang on to.
Neither seem especially at ease in what is essentially a romantic comedy with gunplay, and most of the time Ms Jolie floats around Venice like an exquisitely carved wooden log.