It has been well over 15 years since Vin Diesel surprised us all as Xander Cage or xXx, the American secret agent-thrill seeker- and lover of all big coats. He still has matured much. xXx: Return of Xander Cage gives you random pieces that just don’t make sense, and it happens so fast that you don’t have any time to really think about the nonsense that is going on screen, which can be considered a good thing because it really feels like whole movie was written by a child.
The child happens to be best friends with Vin Diesel, so I guess it is okay.
In the 2005 sequel, State of the Union, Xander was killed in a really big explosive attack, but in this type of series, you can tell he is really alive without any type of explanation why.
The only reason we know he is alive is because he gets reintroduced in the film by climbing and removing parts from a satellite pylon and then skiing through the jungle, which is something that a dead person would do. Even though he is up to his really awesome stunts, Xander isn’t an agent for hire anymore and just spends his days watching soccer in Brazil.
The xXx program, recruits various dare devils and criminals and turns them into some terrorist hunting spies, and they just don’t care that Xander is retired, simply because they need him to hunt down some radicals that are led by Donnie Yen.
Yen’s character is seen as bad because he smokes and is wearing a leather jacket and then jumps 90 feet into a window of the NSA headquarters, and just starts going to town on suits and then steals this large remote that is able to turn satellites off, making them crash to Earth. Obviously this is something the NSA doesn’t really want to happen, so they call Xander from retirement.
The plot is really straightforward but it doesn’t matter, because the story is just a piece of thin string that is tying all the awesome stunts together. There isn’t a dull moment, and there is even a explosion heavy scene that has people chatting around a table and just toss grenades at each other before the Russians come into play and breaks everything down. Then Vin and his people will contain a back and forth on motorcycles that can be rode on the sea.
DJ Caruso has directed every piece to be like a really cool Red Bull Extreme sports promotion, which is fitting given that most of the stunt doubles are actual professional extreme sportsman, and many of them are entirely based on real life stunts and done by real men and women.
The cast is pretty diverse, and has managed to draw on the talent from a lot of cinema going markets like Thailand, Australia, India, China and even the UK. There are also different degrees of ability of action that is offered from Academy Award Nominee, Toni Collette, to UFC champion Michael Bisping. Neymar, professional soccer player has made his Hollywood debut in a nice breakfast scene with Samuel L. Jackson that starts with stopping a robbery by hitting a gunman in the head with a napkin holder.
There are only a few films where something like this could happen, let alone show up and not become the most ridiculous thing in the whole movie. In the xXx world, this is normal and can happen and people just go about their days. When it comes to Vin Diesel, he has been given the main bulk of weird lines and scenarios, which only he could get away with while walking topless into a room of practically nude women, having sex with them and then saying ‘the things I do for my country”, then leaving in the morning while they sleep and never calling them again.
You will already know if you are going to or not go see xXx: Return of Xander Cage. It just depends on your willingness to accept a bunch of random things thrown together in outlandish plotlines, situations, and dialogue just because they have Vin Diesel in them. It is a pretty ridiculous ride that you shouldn’t take seriously, or hang around enough to commit to the boring nature or the fact that it makes you question what you are actually seeing on the screen.