Around the World in 80 Days (2004 film)

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Around the World in 80 Days
Movie poster Around the World in 80 Days.jpg
Directed by Frank Coraci
Produced by Bill Badalato
Hal Lieberman
Screenplay by David Titcher
David Benullo
David Goldstein
Based on Around the World in Eighty Days 
by Jules Verne
Starring
Music by Trevor Jones
David A. Stewart
Cinematography Phil Meheux
Edited by Tom Lewis
Production
  company
Walden Media
Distributed by Walt Disney Pictures
Release date(s)
  • June 13, 2004 (2004-06-13) (Los Angeles, California)
  • June 16, 2004 (2004-06-16) (United States)
Running time 120 minutes[1]
Country United States
Germany
Language English
Budget $110 million[1]
Box office $72,178,895[1]

Around the World in 80 Days is a 2004 American-German adventure comedy film based on Jules Verne's novel of the same name. It stars Jackie Chan, Steve Coogan and Cécile de France. The film is set in 19th-century Britain and centers on Phileas Fogg (Steve Coogan), here reimagined as an eccentric inventor, and his efforts to circumnavigate the globe in 80 days. During the trip, he is accompanied by his Chinese valet, Passepartout (Jackie Chan). For comedic reasons, the film intentionally deviated wildly from the novel and included a number of anachronistic elements.

With production costs of about $110 million and estimated marketing costs of $30 million, it earned $24 million at the U.S. box office and $72 million worldwide, making it a box office bomb. The film finally turned a profit in DVD sales.[1]

The film is notable for being Arnold Schwarzenegger's last film before he took a hiatus from acting to become Governor of California.

Film set at Berlin's Gendarmenmarkt in April 2003

Plot[edit]

During the late 19th century, an unidentified Chinese man robs the Bank of England. To evade the police, he becomes the valet for Phileas Fogg, an inventor, taking the pseudonym Passepartout. Phileas, just before Passepartout arrived, had been trying to break the 50-mph speed barrier, and after succeeding with the help of Passepartout, they head to the Royal Academy of Science. There, Fogg is insulted by the other "brilliant minds", in particular William Thomson, 1st Baron Kelvin, who believes that everything worth discovering has already been discovered. Phileas is pressured into a bet to see whether he can travel around the world in 80 days. If he wins he will become Minister of Science in Lord Kelvin's place, if not he will destroy his lab and never invent anything again. Phileas and Passepartout start their journey around the world, taking a carriage and leaving London after a confrontation with Inspector Fix, a corrupt officer hired by the Royal Academy of Science to stop them.

Passepartout and Phileas journey to Paris. Pretending to take Phileas to a convention with Thomas Edison, Passepartout leads him to an art school where Phileas meets Monique La Roche, a would-be impressionist. There, Passepartout is attacked by disguised warriors, the Black Scorpions, sent by General Fang, a female Chinese warlord who is after the Jade Buddha that he stole. Fang had previously given it to Kelvin in exchange for military assistance in China. When Monique learns of Phileas's ambition, she convinces them to take her with them. They depart in a hot-air balloon, chased by Fang's warriors.

Whilst on the Orient Express, Monique learns that Passepartout is trying to return the Jade Buddha back to his village, and is travelling with Phileas to get there quickly. Monique keeps his secret in exchange for him convincing Phileas to let her travel with him. They travel to Turkey, where the train stops. Guards climb onboard and inform the trio that they are greeted by Prince Habi. During the Prince's banquet, he orders Monique to stay as his seventh wife while the men are ordered to leave. The men blackmail Prince Habi into releasing Monique using a prized but apparently flimsy "The Thinker" statue of the Prince. The statue is destroyed, much to Habi's anger, but the three travelers escape from the guards.

Lord Kelvin learns that Phileas has been involuntarily abetting a thief's escape. He orders the British colonial authorities in India to arrest both. Passepartout sees notice of the price on his head and warns his companions. Disguised as women they evade the police in Agra but are again attacked by Fang's warriors. Using Inspector Fix and a sextant as weapons, they defeat their assailants and flee to China.

Passepartout leads his friends to his village, Lanzhou, where they are happily greeted. They spend several days there and are attacked by the Black Scorpions. Phileas, Monique and Passepartout, whose name is revealed to be Lau Xing, are held captive. Lau Xing challenges the leader of the group to a fight. At first he fights alone and is defeated; moments later he is joined by the martial arts masters of the "Ten Tigers of Canton", of which he is one. The Tigers drive the Black Scorpions from the village and free the Westerners. The Buddha is returned to the village temple. Phileas, unhappy that his companions used him, leaves China alone.

He travels to San Francisco and is tricked out of his money. He is found by Lau Xing and Monique, who decided to help him win his bet. In the desert they find the Wright brothers and the three inventors discuss the flying machine. Phileas finds the brothers' plans brilliant but suggests a few changes.

Lau Xing, Monique, and Phileas' next stop is New York City, where a crowd greets them, making it impossible for them to reach their ship. A policeman takes them through a building he claims is a shortcut, but it is an ambush. Fang's minions made arrangements with Lord Kelvin to take Lanzhou and tap the jade reserves underneath it, but if Phileas wins the bet Lord Kelvin will not have the means to help them. A battle against Fang and her minions commences in the workshop where the Statue of Liberty was constructed, ending in Fang being knocked out by Monique with a punch. The three friends are victorious. Though Phileas could have gotten the boat, he misses it to help Lau Xing. Phileas feels he has lost, but the other two say they may still make it if they catch the next ship.

They board an old ship and Phileas convinces the captain to let him build a plane out of the ship's old wood in exchange for a new ship. Using the changed Wright brothers' plans, Phileas builds a plane while the ship's crew builds a catapult to launch it into the sky. They reach London, where the machine falls apart and they crash in front of the Royal Academy. Lord Kelvin sends police to stop them from making it to the top step of the Royal Academy of Science, and the clock strikes noon, ending the wager.

Lord Kelvin proclaims himself the victor. Monique, Fix and other ministers attest to Kelvin's unfair methods and his bullying nature, but Kelvin scoffs at them. In the process he insults Queen Victoria, who is nearby listening. She learned that he had sold her arsenal to Fang in exchange for jade mines in China thanks to one of his aides. Kelvin is arrested and sent to prison, but vows revenge on all of England, especially Phileas. Phileas realizes he is one day early thanks to crossing the international date line. He ascends the stairs of the Academy and kisses Monique, victorious in his bet.

Cast[edit]

Reception[edit]

Around the World in 80 Days was met with mixed reviews. Review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes gives the film a 31% approval rating, based on 127 reviews, with an average score of 4.8 out of 10, with the site's consensus stating: "Hit-and-miss family fare that bears only the slightest resemblance to Verne's novel."[2] Metacritic give the film weighted score of 49 out of 100, based on reviews 33 sampled reviews, indicating "mixed to average reviews.".[3]

While some reviewers[specify] criticized it for having little to no resemblance to the novel it is based on, others such as Roger Ebert praised it for its visual style and for being "goofy fun".[4]

In 2014, the Los Angeles Times listed the film as one of the most expensive box office flops of all time.[5]

The film was nominated for two Razzie Awards - Worst Remake or Sequel and Worst Supporting Actor (Arnold Schwarzenegger).[6]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d "Around the World in 80 Days (2004)". Box Office Mojo. IMDB. Retrieved 2011-10-29. 
  2. ^ "Around the World in 80 Days Movie Reviews, Pictures". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster. Retrieved 2011-10-29. 
  3. ^ "Around the World in 80 Days Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved 2014-02-13. 
  4. ^ Roger Ebert (June 16, 2004). "Around the World in 80 Days". Rogerebert.suntimes.com. Retrieved 2014-07-20. 
  5. ^ Eller, Claudia,"The costliest box office flops of all time", Los Angeles Times (January 15, 2014)
  6. ^ "For Immediate Release". Razzies.com. Retrieved 2014-02-13. 

External links[edit]