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There was a certain inevitability that Jacques Tardiââ‚¬â„˘s legendary series of comic books featuring the exploits of the fearless AdĂ¨le Blanc-Sec would one day reach the big screen. Film director and producer Luc Besson has long dreamed of doing just this and finally he was able to realise his ambition, although the end result looks far more like a debauched send-up of the Indian Jones saga than anything that was ever conceived by Tardi.
Tardi originally conceived his tomboy heroine as an overt parody of the kind of infallible hero that featured heavily in the serialised adventure stories of the first decade of the 20th Century (stories which were subsequently adapted for cinema by Louis Feuillade). Likewise, Bessonââ‚¬â„˘s Les Aventures extraordinaires dââ‚¬â„˘AdĂ¨le Blanc-Sec is a spirited lampoon of the archetypal Hollywood action adventure movie, hilariously funny in places but too obviously enamoured of the genre it parodies to be totally effective.
With its totally chaotic plot, surfeit of O.T.T. special effects and completely ludicrous characterisation, the film is extremely easy to fault. However, as a piece of mindless entertainment which has been slung together with scant regard for the aesthetics of cinema or the mocking eye of the serious film critic it is pretty well unsurpassed. Here we are reacquainted with Luc Bessonââ‚¬â„˘s juvenile side, not seen since his equally outlandish sci-fi spectacular The Fifth Element (1997).
The maddest, fastest and most wildly energetic French film of the year, Les Aventures extraordinaires dââ‚¬â„˘AdĂ¨le Blanc-Sec is either (depending on your personal taste) uproarious fun or a cinematic abomination. In either case, any film in which Louise Bourgoin plays a feisty pterodactyl-fighting action hero (in frilly corsets) is worth consideration.