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XXX

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Vin Diesel, XXX
XXX; Murray Close

XXX

type:
Movie
Current Status:
In Season
mpaa:
PG-13
runtime:
124 minutes
Wide Release Date:
08/09/02
performer:
Asia Argento, Vin Diesel, Samuel L. Jackson, TeeJay Boyce, Joe Bucaro III, Marton Csokas, Eve, Tony Hawk
director:
Rob Cohen
distributor:
Columbia Pictures
author:
75983
genre:
ActionAdventure, Mystery and Thriller

We gave it a D

”It’s a Vin Diesel movie” is how Vin Diesel describes it. Enough said. But here’s a little more anyway: Diesel plays Xander Cage, a.k.a. XXX, a snarling, antisocial extreme-sports enthusiast who’s recruited by a supersecret government agency (headed by Jackson) to put his unique athletic abilities to use as a spy. Director Cohen describes exactly what that means: ”He surfs down a stairway using a waiter’s tray. He steals a senator’s Corvette and drives it off a bridge and surfs on it all the way down. He does stunts on a motocross freestyle bike while being chased by a helicopter with a Vulcan cannon. Basically, we’re reinventing the spy movie.”

And, they hope, inventing a franchise that, if all goes according to plan, will turn Diesel into the hottest secret agent since that English dude who’s always shaking his martinis. It’s an expensive gamble — Sony is investing upwards of $90 million in the film — but Diesel and Cohen do have a proven track record. The two teamed up for last year’s ”The Fast and the Furious,” which ended up reinventing the hot-rod movie to the tune of $145 million. Plus, there does seem to be an opening for a new big-screen spy these days.

”Look, James Bond is cool,” says Diesel. ”He’s the father of all movie spies. But James Bond is a leftover from the Clark Gable mentality. James Bond is a guy in a suit, and I don’t know a kid today who wears a suit. My character is totally different. He doesn’t give a s— about anything but himself and his thrills. He’s a guy who’s proficient at what he does because of all the time he spent not doing his homework and instead learning how to do Superman seat grabs on a motocross.”

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