XXX (film series)

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XXX
Directed by
Produced by
Written by
StarringSee below
Music by
Cinematography
Edited by
Production
company
Distributed by
Release date
2002–present
Running time
322 minutes[1][2]
Country
  • United States
LanguageEnglish
BudgetTotal (3 films):
$215 million
Box officeTotal (3 films):
$694,434,926[3]

XXX (stylized as xXx and pronounced as Triple X) is an American action film series created by Rich Wilkes. It stars Vin Diesel and Ice Cube and consists of three full-length feature films: XXX (2002), XXX: State of the Union (2005) and XXX: Return of Xander Cage (2017), and a short film: The Final Chapter: The Death of Xander Cage. The series has grossed $694 million worldwide.

Films[edit]

XXX (2002)[edit]

The film was released on August 9, 2002, which stars Vin Diesel as Xander Cage, a thrill seeking extreme sports enthusiast, stuntman and rebellious athlete-turned-reluctant spy for the National Security Agency who is sent on a dangerous mission to infiltrate a group of potential Russian terrorists in Central Europe. The film also stars Asia Argento, Marton Csokas and Samuel L. Jackson. It was directed by Rob Cohen, who previously directed The Fast and the Furious (2001), in which Diesel also starred.

XXX: State of the Union (2005)[edit]

The film was released on April 29, 2005, which stars Ice Cube as Darius Stone, a new agent in the Triple X program, who is sent to Washington, DC to defuse a power struggle amongst national leaders.

XXX: Return of Xander Cage (2017)[edit]

The film was released on January 20, 2017, sees the return of Diesel as Xander Cage who comes out of self-imposed exile, thought to be long dead, and is set on a collision course with deadly alpha warrior and his team in a race to recover a sinister and seemingly unstoppable weapon known as Pandora's Box. Recruiting an all-new group of thrill-seeking cohorts, Xander finds himself enmeshed in a deadly conspiracy that points to collusion at the highest levels of world governments.[4]

XXX 4[edit]

The H Collective and iQiyi partnered to produce a fourth installment of the XXX film series after The H Collective acquired franchise rights from Revolution Studios. D. J. Caruso was planned to direct the film, with Vin Diesel to reprise his role as Xander Cage. Production was scheduled to begin in early 2019.[5] On November 20, 2018, Deadline Hollywood reported that Jay Chou and Zoe Zhang had been cast.[6] Japanese rock star and composer Yoshiki has been announced to create the film's score.[7][8]

Short film[edit]

The Final Chapter: The Death of Xander Cage[edit]

Included with the 2005 director's cut DVD of the first film is a four-minute short titled The Final Chapter: The Death of Xander Cage, that serves as a prequel to XXX: State of the Union by detailing the alleged death of Xander Cage before the events of that film.

In the short film, Xander is played by Vin Diesel's stunt double Khristian Lupo (who never shows his face or speaks) while reusing some archival lines spoken by Diesel. It also features Leila Arcieri as Jordan King from the first film and John G. Connolly as Lt. Colonel Alabama "Bama" Cobb, one of the villains from XXX: State of the Union who is Deckert's right hand man, as the man behind the attack on Xander.

The sequence opens with Xander driving in a car with Jordan King. He stops next to his apartment building. King makes sexual overtures to him and they get intimate. Suddenly they hear a noise and Xander goes to check it out. Cobb's men show up and abduct King. They plant a bomb in the building and drop her coat on the steps to trick Xander to his death. After confronting a homeless man, Xander returns to the building. He takes the bait left by Cobb and his henchmen and is apparently blown apart by a huge explosion. His trademark coat survives the blast. Cobb shows up and picks up a piece of burnt skin from Xander's neck which has the triple x tattoo on it. He remarks "Poor Xander, you never had very much between the ears." His men pick him up and drive off in their car. Cobb's motives for killing Xander are obvious; he doesn't want him to interfere in Deckert's plans. Feuer Frei by Rammstein plays in the background during the sequence.

Cast[edit]

Characters Films Short film
XXX XXX:
State of the Union
XXX: Return of Xander Cage XXX 4 The Final Chapter:
The Death of Xander Cage
2002 2005 2017 TBA 2005
Xander Cage
XXX
Vin Diesel Vin Diesel Khristian Lupo
Vin Diesel
(archive recordings)
NSA Agent Augustus Eugene Gibbons Samuel L. Jackson  
Darius Stone
XXX
  Ice Cube  
Toby Lee Shavers Michael Roof  
Jordan King Leila Arcieri Leila Arcieri
Alabama "Bama" Cobb   John G. Connolly   John G. Connolly
Yorgi Martin Csokas
Yelena Asia Argento
Milan Sova Richy Müller
Kirill Werner Daehn
Kolya Petr Jákl
Viktor Jan Pavel Filipensky
California State Senator Dick Hotchkiss Tom Everett
El Jefe Danny Trejo
NSA Agent Jim McGrath Thomas Ian Griffth
J.J. Eve
NSA Agent Roger Donnan William Hope
Ivan Pedgrag Radek Tomecka
Ivan Podrov Martin Hub
General George Deckert   Willem Dafoe  
NSA Agent Kyle Christopher Steele   Scott Speedman  
U.S. President James Sanford   Peter Strauss  
Zeke   Xzibit  
Charlie Mayweather   Sunny Mabrey  
Lola Jackson   Nona Gaye  
NSA Agent Meadows   Ramon De Ocampo  
Xiang
XXX
Donnie Yen  
Serena Unger
XXX
Deepika Padukone  
Becky Clearidge Nina Dobrev  
Adele Wolff Ruby Rose  
Talon Tony Jaa  
Jane Marke Toni Collette  
Harvard "Nicks" Zhou Kris Wu  
Tennyson "Torch" Rory McCann  
CIA Director Anderson Al Sapienza  
Gina Roff Ariadna Gutiérrez  
Hawk Michael Bisping  
Ainsley Hermione Corfield  
Red Erik Andrey Ivchenko  
Neymar Jr.
XXX
Neymar  

Crew[edit]

Film Director Writer(s) Producer(s) Cinematographer Music Editor(s)
XXX Rob Cohen Rich Wilkes Neal H. Moritz Dean Semler Randy Edelman Chris Lebenzon
Joel Negron
Paul Rubell
XXX: State of the Union Lee Tamahori Simon Kinberg Neal H. Moritz
Anre Schmidt
David Tattersall Marco Beltrami Mark Goldblatt
Todd E. Miller
Steven Rosenblum
XXX: Return of Xander Cage D. J. Caruso F. Scott Frazier Joe Roth
Jeff Kirschenbaum
Vin Diesel
Samantha Vincent
Russell Carpenter Brian Tyler
Robert Lydecker
Jim Page
Vince Filippone
XXX 4

Reception[edit]

Box office performance[edit]

Film Release date Box office revenue Box office ranking Budget Reference
North America Other
territories
Worldwide All time
North America
All time
worldwide
XXX August 9, 2002 $142,109,382 $135,339,000 $277,448,382 #334 #416 $70 million [9]
XXX: State of the Union April 29, 2005 $26,873,932 $44,148,761 $71,022,693 #2,675 N/A $60 million[failed verification] [10]
XXX: Return of Xander Cage January 20, 2017 $44,898,413 $301,065,438 $345,963,851 #1,750 #322 $85 million [11]
Total $213,881,727 $480,553,199 $694,434,926 $215 million [3]

Critical response[edit]

Film Rotten Tomatoes Metacritic CinemaScore
XXX 48% (179 reviews)[12] 48 (33 reviews)[13] A−[14]
XXX: State of the Union 17% (136 reviews)[15] 37 (31 reviews)[16] B+[14]
XXX: Return of Xander Cage 46% (136 reviews)[17] 42 (25 reviews)[18] A–[14]

The first film received mixed reviews from critics. Roger Ebert called it "as good as a James Bond movie".[19] Adam Smith of Empire Online called the movie, "Sporadically entertaining, but seriously hampered by a very choppy screenplay", and rating it three out of five stars.[20] The film was nominated for a Razzie Award for Most Flatulent Teen-Targeted Movie, but lost to Jackass: The Movie.

The second film in the series was panned by critics, Boo Allen of the Denton Record Chronicle called it "a chubby, surly, incomprehensible action hero".[21] Brian Orndorf of FilmJerk.com compared watching the film to running "headfirst at top speed into a brick wall".[22] David Hiltbrand of the Philadelphia Inquirer said "the plot swings between pathetically implausible and aggressively stupid".[23] Some critics liked the film. Mack Bates of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel praised Ice Cube's "trademark charisma and street sensibility",[citation needed] while Owen Gleiberman of Entertainment Weekly called it "that rare B movie that's rooted in gut-level stirrings of power and retaliation".[24] Paul Arendt of the BBC said, "Viewed on its own trashy terms, it succeeds brilliantly".[25]

The third film received mixed reviews from critics. Dan Jolin of Empire Online said, "We've seen all these stunts pulled before, and seen them done better, but there's some pleasure to be had here — even if it's of the extremely guilty kind.", and rating it three out of five stars.[26] Andrew Lapin of Uproxx gave the film a negative review, saying: "There is an intellectual argument to be made in favor of the Fast & Furious franchise, which features diverse casts, operatic plotlines, and cartoon setpieces that often look like a child assembled them out of Hot Wheels sets. xXx is aiming for a much lower bar, striving only to be marketable, not inventive. The series is no longer interested in aping James Bond, lacking as it does a decent gadget or supervillain and often highlighting the sidekicks at the expense of Xander himself."[27]

Video games[edit]

A video game featuring Xander Cage was produced for Game Boy Advance, released in North America and Europe in 2002.[28]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "XXX (2002)". British Board of Film Classification. August 9, 2002. Retrieved July 21, 2016.
  2. ^ "XXX: State of the Union (2005)". British Board of Film Classification. April 29, 2005. Retrieved July 21, 2016.
  3. ^ a b "xXx Movies at the Box Office". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved May 8, 2019.
  4. ^ "'xXx: The Return of Xander Cage' Synopsis Sounds Exciting if You've Never Seen a 'xXx' Movie". February 11, 2016.
  5. ^ Frater, Patrick (September 6, 2018). "'xXx 4' Expands H Collective and iQIYI's Hollywood-China Funding Pact (Exclusive)". Variety. Retrieved October 25, 2018.
  6. ^ Amanda N'Duka (November 20, 2018). "Vin Diesel-Led 'xXx 4' Adds 'The Green Hornet's Jay Chou". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved November 20, 2018.
  7. ^ "Yoshiki composes music for the films xXx 4 and Spycies, as X Japan finish up first album in more than 22 years". Consequence of Sound. 2019-01-23. Retrieved 2019-08-05.
  8. ^ Blabbermouth (2019-01-22). "X JAPAN's YOSHIKI To Create Theme Song for New 'xXx 4' Film Starring VIN DIESEL". BLABBERMOUTH.NET. Retrieved 2019-08-05.
  9. ^ "XXX (2002))". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved August 21, 2016.
  10. ^ "XXX: State of the Union (2005)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved August 21, 2016.
  11. ^ "XXX: Return of Xander Cage (2017)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved February 19, 2017.
  12. ^ "XXX". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved July 21, 2016.
  13. ^ "XXX: reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved July 21, 2016.
  14. ^ a b c "CinemaScore". Retrieved May 21, 2019.
  15. ^ "XXX: State of the Union". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved July 21, 2016.
  16. ^ "XXX: State of the Union: Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved July 21, 2016.
  17. ^ "xXx: Return of Xander Cage (2017)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved January 19, 2017.
  18. ^ "XXX: Return of Xander Cage reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved January 19, 2017.
  19. ^ "XXX". rogerebert.com. Retrieved July 21, 2016.
  20. ^ "XXX (2002) review". empireonline.com. Retrieved July 24, 2016.
  21. ^ "ROTTEN TOMATOES: Just what we need, a chubby, surly, incomprehensible action hero". Archived from the original on December 11, 2008.
  22. ^ Havens, Cassandra. "FilmJerk.com - Reviews - XXX: State of the Union". Archived from the original on October 20, 2006. Retrieved July 20, 2016.
  23. ^ David Hiltbrand. "David Hiltbrand Movie Reviews". Retrieved April 4, 2019.
  24. ^ "Movie Review: XXX: State of the Union". Entertainment Weekly. May 4, 2005.
  25. ^ Paul Arendt (April 28, 2005). "BBC - Movies - review - XXX: The Next Level". BBC.
  26. ^ "xXx: Return Of Xander Cage Review". empireonline.com. Retrieved April 4, 2019.
  27. ^ Lapin, Andrew (January 20, 2017). "Vin Diesel Aims His Skateboard Low With 'xXx: Return Of Xander Cage'". Uproxx. Retrieved January 20, 2017.
  28. ^ "XXX Prices GameBoy Advance - Compare Loose, CIB & New Prices". PriceCharting.