Very stylish, with great cinematography and a pop soundtrack that perfectly peppers the lavish period-piece setting. Story-wise, the slow opening act intrigues as quiet Marie is made pawn in a publicized political chess match, but the unfocused next two acts fail to generate any momentum. They sit better in out-the-carriage-window hindsight (the forced reign of a teen queen is bound to be messy) but more consistency and depth in the one of the character or plot threads would have been nice.
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. (IMDb)
It’s pretty goofy–in a cringe-y way sometimes (the plot and the green screens are pretty hard to take seriously), but mostly it’s just a lot of fun, with humour that comes often and is often quite clever (see the accidental artwork arising from the altercation) and an adventure that brings with it plenty of cool kung fu action and bumbling side characters. It wasn’t at the forefront obviously, but there were hints of good character development for Coogan’s progressive yet uptight scientist too.
Occasionally slips into lackluster-ly standard low-brow humour (dancing aside, Grossman is a bit much, and so was Kirk and Tugg’s convo about Simple Jack), but the satirical meta-movie framework that pervades the film offers loads of laughs, from the uproarious opening trailers, news clips, and initial action sequence (the first act was definitely the best) to the ongoing naivety of Stiller’s action star and stubbornness of RDJ’s method actor as contrasted with Baruchel’s earnest Kevin.