It shouldn’t be surprising that “Lucy” easily ranks as one of the worst films of 2014, due to one simple credit: Luc Besson. 

“Who is he?” you might ask.

Besson is the ex-husband of Mila Jovovich; he wrote the scripts and directed her in “The Fifth Element” and “The Messenger” in the late 1990s. However, it’s the more recent material that has corroded Besson’s image and career, which includes all the Transporter films, that awful “From Paris with Love” Travolta film, and let us not forget last year’s mob disappointment, “The Family,” starring Michelle Pfeiffer and Robert DeNiro.

Yes, he is to blame for all of that.

If that weren’t enough, “Lucy” now joins another one of my worst films of the year “3 Days to Kill,” which was, you guessed it, written by Luc Besson.

Through a twist of fate, American tourist Lucy (Scarlett Johansson) is subjected to a drug called CPH4, which is the synthetic version of the material that pregnant women make in small doses during their pregnancy. Humans only use 10 percent of their brain, and this drug, manufactured by the Chinese, will allow its victim to access more for a limited period of time before it destroys its host.

Lucy, realizing what is happening to her, and becoming aware of all the mysteries of the universe and the origin of life, contacts Professor Norman (Morgan Freeman), whose research into the human brain and its evolution will allow him to be the only one who can understand what is happening to her. 

At first, “Lucy” looks to be similar to “Salt,” starring Angelina Jolie; but it quickly reveals itself as more of a science fiction film than a female action vehicle. Thankfully, it runs only 90 minutes.

Lucy becomes a film about Besson’s misunderstanding of the brain shoved into a mainstream movie with no real purpose. Lucy doesn’t have a goal or a purpose; she isn’t really out for revenge because she doesn’t have long to live.

As her brainpower nears the 100 percent level (which is cleverly splashed on the screen during moments of tension), she will die. Lucy is basically a mutant; Besson just rips off the entire concept of The X-Men and throws it into this poorly developed character with blonde hair and big boobs. 

The moment when Lucy starts using the same powers as Jean Grey, Besson’s lack of creativity for the character is obvious. For instance, when Lucy starts vomiting rainbow fire, I realized that he has just created a mindless film with no social commentary, has no understanding of superheroes, and creates rules (like her instantly knocking over a group of policemen by waving her hand). 

Yet, 10 minutes later, with more brainpower, she throws the Chinese villains up in the air, wasting her precious time, and more importantly, ours.

“Silly” isn’t a strong enough word for the stupidity that is displayed here. Johansson has played a superhero twice this year and one alien; I think she needs to do something different. 

Final thought — Easily the stupidest film of 2014.

Dustin Chase is a film critic and associate editor with Texas Art & Film, which is based in Galveston. More reviews are available at

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