(director/writer: Luc Besson; cinematographer: Thierry Arbogast; editor: Julien Rey; music: Eric Serra; cast: Scarlett Johansson (Lucy), Morgan Freeman (Professor Norman), Min-sik Choi (Mr. Jang), Amr Waked (Pierre Del Rio), Julian Rhind-Tutt (The Limey), Luca Angeletti(Italian Mule), Pilou Asbæk (Richard); Runtime: 89; MPAA Rating: R; producer: Virginie Silla; Universal; 2014)
“The sci-fi thriller can only go so far with its daffiness before things become too mindless for comfort.”
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
The sci-fi thriller can only go so far with its daffiness before things become too mindless for comfort. French director Luc Besson (“The Lady”/”La Femme Nikita“/”The Fifth Element”), noted for his previous lightweight female action hero thrillers, comes up short with this attempt in creating a super-cool thriller.
Lucy (Scarlett Johansson) is a ditsy American ex-pat in Taiwan, who can’t get away fast enough from a bad news drug mule week-old boyfriend (Pilou Asbæk), asking her to deliver a locked attache case to a Mr. Jang (Min-sik Choi, South Korean actor). When tricked into making the delivery, Lucy finds the Korean mob headed by Jang to be a group of ruthless killers who implanted a bag of an experimental recreation blue crystal drugs in her intestines for her to be a drug mule. But through some strange events, Lucy ends up ingesting the drugs. This causes the vic to undergo a complete metamorphosis that leads to her having superhuman powers of strength and thought, and the ability to kick ass so she can escape her tormentors and turn the tables on the bad guys. In Paris, Lucy gets the help of the drug police, led by Captain Del Rio (Amr Waked), to bring them down while in the end she vanishes into her own world.
Things get tiresome when Morgan Freeman enters the pic as the respected know-it-all American science Professor Norman, on a lecture tour in Paris to spin his far-out theories about the brain and lament that mankind only uses ten percent of its brain while dolphins use twenty. Freeman’s job in the movie is to explain things like a professor would about how the brain functions and about what this experimental drug is all about and, also, to see if he can convince us that the pic makes sense. His academic lecturing takes the piss out of this kinky superbrain action pic and the more he explains the more ponderous and inane everything becomes, and the now omnipotent Lucy seems beyond any logical comprehension. By the time Lucy starts getting her revenge on the Asian mob who done the white woman wrong, the pic has gone off course by a hundred percent and seems as if it turned into a bad acid trip flick.
REVIEWED ON 7/25/2014 GRADE: C+