Wax: Nice work, Reese.
Reese: (covered in blood) What's so nice about it?
Wax: How 'bout he's dead and you're not?2010 action film produced and co-written by Luc Besson and starring John Travolta and Jonathan Rhys Meyers.James Reese (Meyers) is the personal aide to U.S. Ambassador in France. Unbeknownst to either the Ambassador or his beautiful French girlfriend Reese is leading a double life as a low level CIA operative. He juggles his responsibilities until he is ordered to team up with brash, trigger-happy, loose cannon Charlie Wax (Travolta).Very violent Hilarity Ensues.
Tropes this film follows:
- Awesomeness by AnalysisWax: How long do you think it'd take to run down nine flights of stairs?. . .Fifty-four seconds. Five seconds to cross the lobby…and four to get to the car.
- Badass Beard: Adorns Travolta as Wax. To emphasize the point, comes with...
- Berserk Button: Charlie and the Chinese restaurant not having good egg foo young.
- Bilingual Bonus: The Chinese restaurant in which cocaine is stored in the ceiling is called "Les Lotus des Neiges'', which means "The Snow Lotus" in French.
- Bond One-Liner: "Wax on, Wax off". (Doubles as a Shout-Out to The Karate Kid, written by Luc Besson's writing partner Robert Mark Kamen.)
- Boom, Headshot: The famous dinner scene. It wound up being a meme.
- The Chessmaster: Reese's opening-scene game with his boss defines his character from the get-go. It's implied that this is the characteristic that lands Reese his big break. Wax is also a speed chessmaster, boardering on Clock King.
- Concealment Equals Cover: Happens repeatedly, but does get subverted once: Wax fires his pistol at a mook who's hiding safely behind a wall. Then he runs out of ammo, grabs an assault rifle and proceeds to shoot the mook through the wall.
- "Maybe you should ask your girlfriend what she was doing in this part of town."
- "I swear, that girl is gonna get you killed."
- Gadget Watches: Wax gets one that can direct a satellite.
- High-Heel–Face Turn: Played with, but ultimately averted.
- Hollywood Silencer: Wax's silenced guns barely make a click and a whistle when they fire.
- I Call It Mrs. Jones: Wax's gun, which he smuggles into France in dozens of cans of energy drink and sings to.
- Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: The only reason Wax manages to stay alive.
- Jerkass: The red-haired ambassador, who despite being told of a possible assassination attempt, and actually seeing a suicide bomber's car explode in front of her, is unable to understand the concept of "security breach" and blames the entire affair on Reese.
- John Travolta Is About to Shoot You
- Large Ham: Wax is hammy even by Travolta's standards.
- Love Redeems: Averted; Caroline still reaches for the trigger even after Reese tries to talk her out of it by reaffirming his love for her.
- Mood Whiplash: The dinner scene. It starts out innocently enough with Wax joining Reese, Caroline and her girlfriend. Then the friend receives "the call (he) was waiting for" and *BAM!*.
- Never Trust a Trailer: The trailer make it seem the movie was a Buddy Cop comedy like Rush Hour.
- Pretty Little Headshots: Mostly averted, but used for style and emotional impact, at the climax.
- And to avoid a huge explosion.
- Men Are the Expendable Gender: Averted; Wax has no problem shooting a female terrorist without turning evil. When Reese shoots Caroline at the end he isn't demonised either - it's sad he had to do it but the film is clear he had no choice.
- Terrorists Without a Cause: We never really get a clear cut answer on why Reese's fiance is plotting to suicide bomb an African aid summit other than saying she was looking for a purpose and a man she met six years ago explained things to her. Arguably parodied because Wax explains a bit during the early part of the film, but Reese (and, since we're viewing the scene through his eyes, the audience) is too high on cocaine to understand it.
- The Triads and the Tongs: Wax and Reese have a run in with the Snakeheads.
- Was It All a Lie?: Caroline says it wasn't, even if her feelings aren't enough to stop her trying to push the trigger on her bomb. Possibly— as we see a few seconds later when Wax disconnects it, the cord to deactivate the bomb was right above the trigger. It's never made clear which she was reaching for- the trigger, or the cord. Which would turn it into Suicide by Cop - Caroline must've known she'd get shot if she moved her hand anywhere close to the trigger.
- Wham Line: Wax: "That's the call we've been waiting for." *BANG*
- Wok Fu: There is a cross between a gunfight and fistfight in a Chinese restaurant.