I decided to treat myself to a night out at the movies and, out of the slim offerings available, chose Lucy. Why this instead of Hercules? After all, the latter does have The Rock in an impressive state of gleaming muscularity and I don’t mind that in the slightest. However, I’m still kind of twitchy and I wasn’t up for a few hours of non-stop surround sound ass-kicking.
While my exposure to Luc Besson’s film catalog is admittedly limited, I almost always enjoy what I see for its eye-popping, vaguely hallucinogenic escapism. The very least that is asked of the viewer is a modicum of suspension of disbelief and, at times, a strong stomach. Lucy requires a healthy dose of the former and some of the latter. Throw in fundamentally flawed neuroscience mumbo-jumbo, Scarlett Johansson as a glassy-eyed drug mule-turned-Matrix castoff, a handful of heavily-armed sneering Korean(?) gangsters, and Morgan Freeman, and you get this movie.
There were certain parts of Lucy that were eerily reminiscent of earlier Besson films - smuggling contraband near the stomach, cheek-clenching car chases, and a randomly-appearing bazooka. However, Lucy is no Plavalaguna - not even Leeloo during the fight scenes. Nor is she Frank Martin, despite her antics behind the steering wheel, and as for the heavy weaponry… well, at that point in the movie, it could have been a bald-capped, goateed John Travolta firing it off a la From Paris with Love and I wouldn’t have asked any questions.
Tl;dr - While Lucy bore strong traces of The Fifth Element and The Transporter, it lacked the pizzazz of either film. It was the curiosity of seeing what would happen to the title character when she reached full brain capacity that kept me in my seat and little else. Well, that and Morgan Freeman. This film may focus on the inner workings of the unleashed human brain, but you will not need yours in order to watch this. In fact, you’d best check it at the door. But it is pretty to look at, and as far as diversions go you could pick far worse.