Expectations are hardly astronomic when a new WWE Studios film is unleashed upon the viewing public but simply put, 'The Chaperone' is painful. Even in the previously capable hands of Stephen Herek, director of Bill And Ted's Excellent Adventure', there can be little doubt that 'The Chaperone' is a botched job.
Levesque leads the way as a former criminal seeking to make up for his failures as a father with his teenage daughter (Ariel Winter) by acting as a chaperone on a school field trip. Except he once again gets mixed up in a bank job and is hounded by his associates, led by Kevin Corrigan.
There are major issues with 'The Chaperone', mostly related to the terrible script and under-par acting. There's diabolically idiotic plot points almost from the get go - none more so than the moment that kicks things off when Levesque abandons a getaway vehicle in the middle of a robbery. Leaving his DNA all over the car keys, steering wheel, door etc.
Sadly, that wasn't even the worst bit. I'm not sure how many more cringeworthy exchanges of "philosophy" or ludicrous Sun Tzu references I could take before imploding at the sheer annoyance of it all. Not many, I wager.
Stephen Herek struggles to negotiate the tonally conflicting plot - half adventure caper, half serious familial drama. He's not exactly aided by his actors, who are generally dull, if not irritating. Unless that was Herek's plan the whole time. The villainous Kevin Corrigan is one of the few to ham it up sufficiently to generate any interest at all, outshining Levesque at almost every turn.
The sad thing is that I really wanted to like this film. I've always felt wrestlers/sports-entertainers/whatever you want to call them have never received the respect they deserve. Films like these are a chance to step outside the niche and prove critics wrong. Unfortunately, 'The Chaperone' fails miserably and could well be considered a step back in the career of Paul Levesque. And everyone else involved.
Director: Stephen Herek
Cast: Paul Levesque, Yeardley Smith, Kevin Corrigan, Ariel Winter
Ariel’s Video Diary
Busload of Bloopers
I’m The Chaperone: Triple H
“Come Back” Music Video: Original Song by Ariel Winter
“That’s What I Am” Inside Look
Purchase 'The Chaperone' on DVD/Blu-Ray at Amazon.co.uk.