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All Critics (28)
| Top Critics (12)
| Fresh (7)
| Rotten (21)
A by-the-books B movie only notable for its energetic action choreography.
With escape as its theme, this thin-plotted pleaser comes hard and goes fast, its rush premium but fleeting.
Corny twists and exchanges ensue in the wobbly story, but, delightfully, Daniel Benmayor's film shows love not just for stunts but for the dynamic surfaces of the city.
As long as it shuts up and keeps moving, "Tracers" makes for a sufficiently diverting, not to mention zero-emission, vehicle.
The script is as leaden as the actors are fleet-footed.
"The Fast and the Furious" - except slower and less incensed.
Granted this flimsy, frenetic vehicle is structured for Lautner's on-screen fitness skill set but the spotty material never quite capitalizes on the star's charisma or potential to enhance the skimpy plot with some meaty revelation.
... the premise of Tracers is ludicrous.
The plot is strictly routine, and so is the script, but the scenes in which the gang members dash and leap, tumble and spring across the city's rooftops give the film a giddy rush of adrenaline.
Taylor Lautner tries to leverage those kids who grew up watching him grow up on screen, in this serviceable, if staid and clichéd action movie set in New York City.
It ignores the basic requirements of cinema - narrative, tension, emotion - to pile on more scenes of attractive, fit people doing dynamic, envelope-pushing things.
In spite of its generic plot and lead actor's blandness, Tracers has enough going for it to make it worth a look...
Taylor Lautner may always be remembered as Jacob, the annoying werewolf boy from the Twilight Series. People have a hard time seeing him as anything else, but Tracers is the second action film I've seen him star in, and this kid has the perfect make up to be a huge action star. Lautner is more than just another good looking actor, as he can speak several languages, is a martial arts expert, and an avid parkourer, all skills he uses in his latest film, Tracers. Lautner plays Cam, a down on his luck bike messenger, who comes to befriend a group of parkour enthusiasts. What they do fascinates Cam and he wants to join them, but when he does, he realizes that they aren't just clowning around, they use their skills to commit crime, and once he's in, Cam has no way out. Original action films are hard to come by, as most people are satisfied with all the special effects and dead bodies. It's a genre that really doesn't call for originality, that's why when you come across a film like this, it's a breath of fresh air. The stunts and moves you see in this film are nothing short of magic, and it's star Taylor Lautner did them all himself. We are so used to seeing Lautner as the sensitive love interest in some romanticized film, that it's hard to even imagine him as an action star, but that changes 10 minutes into this film. It's the stunts, the attitude, his characters whole personality, that makes his a unique a-typical action star, and it is really something to see. On the surface, Tracers may be nothing more than another story about a group of burglars, but what they can do is extraordinary, and was really fun to watch. This film is original, fast paced, and brings to light a new action star, who isn't in his sixties or the WWE. It may not have all the bodies and explosions normally associated with this type of film, but as I said, It was a lot of fun to watch.
Pretty bad, but at least it's not Taylor Lautner's fault. He wouldn't be my first choice for a film lead, but he can usually pull it off. The problems here include the writing and story...they're both horrible, especially the character development and dialogue. The freerunning is great, so at least they get that right. Aside from that, this movie is a trainwreck.
Not an awful movie by any means. Talk about a misleading poster though. Cam, Lautner's character, only uses a gun, that's not even loaded as it was only for show, during one scene and he didn't even appear to want to use it in the first place. Talk about misleading advertising. It's really pointless trying to figure the story out, not that it's difficult to do so because I did, because you're never really gonna care about any of these characters or their 'struggles'. Very generic plot and storytelling honestly. I remember mentioning in my review of some of the Twilight films, unsure of which one, that Taylor Lautner was the only one that showed any life out of the three leads. But, watching this film, it's obvious that he does not have the charisma or the presence to be a truly effective leading man. I think he can honestly skate by on these by the numbers, small action films, but he comes across more like a supporting actor than a lead guy. And there's nothing wrong with that, sometimes the supporting characters are more memorable than the leads themselves. Who did people remember from Pirates of the Caribbean? It wasn't William Turner or Elizabeth Swan. It was, you guessed it, Captain Jack Sparrow. Not saying that Sparrow wasn't instrumental to the plot, but he was meant as a secondary character to support William and Elizabeth on their quest. Of course in the sequels Jack Sparrow was rammed down the throat of people so badly that the character is now a parody of itself, even if it's still a successful franchise. Law of diminishing returns after all. But I digress, the point is that being a secondary character in a film is not the end of the world for someone like Taylor Lautner. It's not that he's bad here, or anything, he's just bland and largely boring. He's not quite Hayden Christensen, thank goodness, he's just two notches above him. The parkour is pretty good. And I say that because, really, the action, as far as fighting/shooting/etc, is minimal. Essentially the film boils down to a bunch of chase sequences. And I suppose that also qualifies as action. Problem is the fact that, as much as I admire and respect parkour practitioners, that all these parkour scenes feel incredibly similar to one another. Literally once you see a parkour scene, in this film, you've seen them all. Acrobatically climbing down a building? Check. Jumping over obstacles and hurdles? Check. Swiftly and efficiently evading enemies? Check. Rinse and repeat. It's not that it isn't good or thoughtfully crafted, it's just that it gets repetitive after the 50th time. Part of the reason that the first District 13 worked well was because on top of the cool and quick parkour, you also had a martial arts expert so you can actually do some action sequences instead of just running away creatively from your enemies. That's what this film was missing honestly, something else other than parkour, in order for it to not feel like it was stuck in place doing the same thing over and over, not moving forward. Which is ironic when you consider that that's completely opposed to everything that parkour is all about. Plus, honestly, and this is more of a personal thing, none of these people look as good or crisp performing parkour as David Belle did in District 13. It has nothing to do with the fact that Belle, in fact, co-invented parkour, it's just everything to do with the fact that he is better. While some of the cast actually did their own parkour stunts, there's a certain disconnect because you can clearly see that other people performing the stunts during certain, more high-octane scenes. The camerawork during one of the chase scenes is almost as bad as anything you would ever see in a found-footage horror film. The characters are generic and, somewhat, unlikable. It's certainly not a terrible film, it's just one that chooses to excel at anything past the parkour stuff and even that becomes boring after a while. I mean it's easy to watch and it won't drive you nuts, so I have to give props where it is due. I wouldn't recommend this at all, but I can't say that I hated the movie. Slightly below average stuff right here.
Yes, ultimately it is cliched and the plot is generic and predictable but stay for the parkour. Those sequences are where the film excels.
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