Lucy is the number one Box Office film in the world at the moment; this summer’s blockbuster. The mesmerising Scarlett Johansson holds it all together; she is on screen for more or less the entire 80 minutes running time. You have to wonder what she said when she was given the pitch: ‘Okay, so I’m the only woman in it?’ Uhmm, yes. ‘No black or brown faces anywhere?’ Uhmm, yes. ‘Who is the romantic lead?’ There is no romance. ‘Not even as a sub-plot?’ Uhmm, no. Sorry. ‘And I’m in every single scene?’ Uhmm, yes. ‘The bad guys. They’re all stereotypical slanty-eyed Asians covered in body tattoos?’ Uhmm, yes. ‘Car chases?’ Uhmm, yes. ‘Guns?’ Uhmm, yes. ‘Mysoginy?’ Uhmm, yes, ’fraid so.
‘And am I right in thinking that you haven’t had a hit film for twenty years, Mr Besson?’
But the girl, she say yes and not only manages to stay afloat in all the mayhem and silliness, but maintains all her poise and detachment. You constantly have the sense that Scarlett is reaching for something of quality while her director is trying for the lowest common denominator. They meet somewhere in the middle. Five star performance meets two star plotting results in [I think], three-star execution. Infuriating, really.