Does 2008's Best Movie Star Jean-Claude Van Damme?

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Maybe it does! Muscles from Brussels Jean-Claude Van Damme's French-language meta comedy J.C.V.D., which premiered at Cannes, is getting some incredibly positive reviews, and not just for a guy whose previous high score on Rotten Tomatoes was a measly 44 percent (for Timecop, which, truthfully, deserved at least a 46 percent). In the movie, which opens in France on June 4, Van Damme plays an exaggerated version of himself who, after losing a custody battle for his daughter (apparently his ex-wife's attorneys clinch their victory by citing the various ways in which he's killed enemies in his films), returns to Belgium to relax out of the media spotlight (see the trailer here). Of course, things get complicated when he's blamed for a bank robbery he didn't commit, presumably with hilarious results.

According to Twitch's Todd Brown, J.C.V.D. is "a truly great film. No matter what criteria you may use to judge it — scripting, cinematography, humor, action, even dramatic performance — J.C.V.D. is one remarkable piece of work … Nearly half way through 2008, this is the best film I've seen all year." Making this even more insane is the fact that Variety's review is also an unqualified rave, citing Van Damme's "near-Buster Keatonesque deadpan" and "a tear- and prayer-filled" monologue that "must be seen to be believed." Assuming this isn't all some massive French Internet prank, we sort of can't wait to see this.

J.C.V.D. Review [Twitch]
J.C.V.D. [Variety]