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Around The World In 80 Days (PG)
Directed by: Frank Coraci
Reviewed by: Paul Fonz
There are cameos from Owen & Luke Wilson, Kathy Burke, Sammo Hung and John Cleese
There are cameos from Owen & Luke Wilson, Kathy Burke, Sammo Hung and John Cleese

More often than not, when a book is adapted for a film, the finished product leaves much to be desired. People always say, "it's not as good as the book", and in the case of this adaptation of Jules Verne's classic, that's true again.

The people at Disney have changed the original story in this children's film, but kept some of the basics in place. Phileas Fogg (Steve Coogan) is an inventor in this version, rather than a gentleman of leisure, and accepts a wager with the Queen's Advisor on Science, Lord Kelvin (Jim Broadbent) on which rides Fogg's dreams and Kelvin's job. The condition of the wager, of course, is for Fogg to circumnavigate the globe in only eighty days.

At this point, the adaptation takes quite a departure from the novel. Jackie Chan's character, Passepartout, has travelled to London from his hometown in China to reclaim a stolen sacred artefact. The only problem is, the artefact is safely locked in the Bank of England. So in this story, it is Passepartout who robs the Bank of England, and then gets caught up in Fogg's scheme whilst trying to escape back to China.

The rest of the film follows their travels around the world, during which time Chan's character does some trademark martial arts, Fogg makes use of some snazzy inventions and their progress is continually thwarted by the police, Lord Kelvin and Chinese gangsters.

Some of the jokes in this film are quite funny in a wry sort of way, but most of them are slapstick gags involving trousers falling down and whiffs of smelly socks, some of which may make you cringe with embarrassment for Steve Coogan.

Overall, this film is not meant to be a comedy, nor is it a martial arts film or a serious adaptation of the novel, which really leaves it feeling like a jack-of-all-trades and a master of none. I'd be reluctant to part with my money to see this one.

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Length: 90 minutes
Certificate: PG
Official Site: http://disney.go.com/disneypictures/80days/main_flash.html
IMDB Link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0327437/
Release Date: 9th July 2004

Top Five Rating: 50.0%50.0%50.0%50.0%50.0%50.0%50.0%50.0%50.0%50.0% (50.0%)
User Rating: 0.0%0.0%0.0%0.0%0.0%0.0%0.0%0.0%0.0%0.0% (0.0%)

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