How To Watch The Tourist


Plot Summary

The Tourist is a thrilling crime-drama film directed by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck. The story follows Frank Tupelo, an American tourist who finds himself entangled in a web of danger and intrigue while vacationing in Venice, Italy.

Frank, played by Johnny Depp, is a math teacher from Wisconsin who decides to embark on a solo adventure to Europe to heal his broken heart. Little does he know that he will soon become a pawn in a game of deception and manipulation.

On the train to Venice, Frank meets a mysterious woman named Elise, portrayed by Angelina Jolie. Elise, a glamorous and enigmatic character, becomes the catalyst for Frank’s dangerous journey. She is being pursued by both the British and Russian intelligence agencies, who believe she is involved with her former lover, a notorious criminal named Alexander Pearce.

As Frank becomes increasingly intertwined with Elise, he finds himself caught in a dangerous game of cat and mouse. He is mistaken for Pearce, and both the police and gangsters are after him. Frank must navigate the intricate world of spies, criminals, and authorities while trying to protect himself and Elise.

As the plot unfolds, the audience is taken on a rollercoaster ride of twists and turns, constantly questioning the true motives of each character. Frank and Elise’s relationship evolves from strangers to partners in crime, leaving viewers unsure of who to trust.

The climax of the film takes place at the luxurious Hotel Danieli, where Frank and Elise plan to escape the clutches of their pursuers. The film culminates in a thrilling showdown, revealing surprising alliances and unveiling hidden identities.

Without giving away too much, The Tourist is an exhilarating ride filled with deception, suspense, and unexpected turns. It keeps viewers on the edge of their seats, eagerly anticipating each revelation and revelation.

Cast and Characters

The Tourist boasts an impressive ensemble cast, with each actor delivering compelling performances that add depth and intrigue to the film.

Johnny Depp stars as Frank Tupelo, the unsuspecting American tourist who gets caught up in a web of mystery and danger. Depp brings his signature charisma to the role, portraying Frank as a vulnerable yet resourceful character with a hidden past.

Angelina Jolie takes on the role of Elise Clifton-Ward, the enigmatic femme fatale who captivates Frank from the moment they meet. Jolie’s portrayal of Elise is both alluring and mysterious, as she navigates the intricacies of her character’s double life.

Paul Bettany portrays Inspector John Acheson, a British agent tasked with tracking down Alexander Pearce. Bettany’s performance adds an air of intensity and determination to the film, as he relentlessly pursues the truth behind Elise’s connections.

Timothy Dalton joins the cast as Chief Inspector Jones, Acheson’s superior who questions Elise’s motives and becomes entangled in the complex web of deception. Dalton’s commanding presence adds depth to the character, adding another layer of suspense to the overall narrative.

Supporting roles are filled by talented actors such as Steven Berkoff, Rufus Sewell, and Christian De Sica, who each bring their unique flair to their respective characters.

The chemistry between Depp and Jolie is palpable on screen, as their characters’ relationship evolves from strangers to partners in crime. Their performances create an intriguing dynamic that keeps the audience guessing about their true intentions.

The ensemble cast showcases their versatility and skill, elevating the film’s storyline and capturing the essence of each character. The combination of talent and chemistry among the actors adds depth and authenticity to the narrative, making The Tourist an engaging and thrilling cinematic experience.


The Tourist is primarily set in the romantic and picturesque city of Venice, Italy. The film beautifully captures the enchanting ambiance of the city, using its iconic canals, historic landmarks, and lavish architecture as a backdrop for the story.

Venice, known for its winding waterways and charming narrow streets, adds a sense of intrigue and mystery to the narrative. The labyrinthine alleys and hidden passageways allow the characters to navigate the city while evading their pursuers, creating a sense of constant tension and excitement.

The filmmakers take full advantage of Venice’s stunning views, showcasing its famous landmarks such as St. Mark’s Square, the Rialto Bridge, and the Grand Canal. These locations not only serve as visually captivating elements but also play a crucial role in the progression of the plot.

The sumptuous interiors of the luxurious Hotel Danieli, where the climax of the film takes place, provide a stark contrast to the narrow streets and canals of Venice. The opulence and grandeur of the hotel reflect the high-stakes nature of the characters’ actions and add a touch of glamour to the overall atmosphere.

The setting of The Tourist is more than just a backdrop; it becomes a character in itself. The film showcases the unique charm and allure of Venice, inviting viewers to immerse themselves in its beauty and effortlessly becoming a part of the story.

The enchanting setting is further enhanced by the masterful cinematography, which captures the city’s romantic essence through sweeping aerial shots and intimate close-ups. The use of warm, golden tones adds to the film’s aesthetic appeal, creating a visually stunning experience for the audience.

Overall, the setting of The Tourist plays a vital role in creating the film’s atmosphere and enhancing the overall viewing experience. Venice’s timeless beauty and its intricate network of canals and narrow streets serve as the perfect backdrop for the thrilling and mysterious narrative.

Film Analysis

The Tourist, directed by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, showcases elements of both a suspenseful thriller and a classic romance. The film incorporates various cinematic techniques and storytelling devices to create a captivating and visually appealing experience for the audience.

One notable aspect of the film is its expert use of misdirection and red herrings. The narrative keeps viewers guessing about the true identities and motivations of the characters, creating a sense of suspense and unpredictability. The twists and turns throughout the story keep audiences engaged, as they eagerly try to decipher the truth behind the intricate web of deception.

The Tourist also highlights the theme of identity and self-discovery. As Frank Tupelo, played by Johnny Depp, finds himself caught up in a dangerous game, his own past and true nature are called into question. This exploration of identity adds depth to the character and raises thought-provoking questions about the fluidity of one’s sense of self.

Cinematographically, the film excels in showcasing the beauty of Venice. The sweeping aerial shots and picturesque views of the city create a visually stunning backdrop for the story. The warm, golden tones and careful framing enhance the romantic atmosphere and reinforce the allure of the location.

The performances in The Tourist are another highlight of the film. Johnny Depp brings his signature charm and eccentricity to the role of Frank, capturing the character’s vulnerability and resourcefulness. Angelina Jolie shines as the enigmatic Elise, effortlessly balancing allure and mystery. The chemistry between Depp and Jolie adds depth to the characters’ complex relationship.

The film’s pacing and editing contribute to its overall impact. The well-placed action sequences and moments of quiet tension keep the audience engaged throughout the narrative. The seamless transitions between scenes and the use of montages effectively convey the passage of time and heighten the suspense.

The Tourist is not without its flaws, as some critics have noted that the plot can be predictable at times. However, the film compensates for this with its strong performances, stunning visuals, and the skillful execution of its suspenseful elements.

Themes and Messages

The Tourist delves into several prominent themes and conveys thought-provoking messages throughout its narrative. One central theme explored in the film is the idea of deception and hidden identities. The characters in The Tourist are constantly disguising their true intentions and identities, blurring the lines of trust and loyalty. This theme prompts viewers to question the true nature of those around them and consider the masks people wear in their daily lives.

The film also explores the concept of self-discovery and the search for identity. Through the character of Frank Tupelo, audiences witness a journey of personal transformation and self-realization. As Frank becomes entangled in a dangerous game of espionage, he must confront his past and embrace his true self. This theme encourages viewers to reflect on the importance of self-reflection and finding authenticity in a world filled with facades.

An underlying message in The Tourist is the power of love and its ability to ignite change. The relationship between Frank and Elise evolves from a chance encounter to a partnership forged in trust and reliance. Love becomes a catalyst for their actions, propelling them to face danger and make difficult choices. This message suggests that love can conquer fear and push individuals to overcome personal obstacles.

The Tourist also touches on the theme of trust versus suspicion. Each character in the film is faced with the challenge of deciphering who can be trusted in a world of manipulation and deception. This theme prompts viewers to question their own perceptions of trust and confront the difficult task of determining who is genuine and who is not.

Furthermore, the film subtly explores the theme of escapism and the allure of a different life. Characters like Elise and Frank are drawn to each other as they seek refuge from their own circumstances. The Tourist suggests that sometimes, the allure of the unknown can be captivating, leading individuals to become lost in a world of fantasy and adventure.


The Tourist showcases stunning cinematography that enhances the overall visual experience of the film. The expertly crafted shots and meticulous attention to detail contribute to the film’s immersive atmosphere and help tell the story in a visually captivating manner.

One remarkable aspect of the film’s cinematography is its use of Venice as a backdrop. The picturesque canals, historic landmarks, and elegant architecture are beautifully captured through sweeping aerial shots and intricate framing. The cinematography highlights the timeless beauty of the city, adding a romantic and enchanting ambiance to the narrative.

The film is characterized by warm, golden tones that evoke a sense of glamour and sophistication. The use of rich colors adds depth and vibrancy to the scenes, creating a visually engaging palette throughout the film.

The Tourist effectively utilizes different camera techniques to intensify the suspense and action sequences. The use of close-ups and tight framing heightens the tension, allowing viewers to feel intimately connected to the characters’ emotions and experiences. Wide shots and long takes capture the grandeur of the surroundings, allowing viewers to fully appreciate the scale of the setting.

The cinematography in The Tourist also plays a crucial role in the portrayal of the characters. The camera captures the nuances of their expressions, revealing their emotions and inner conflicts. The lighting and framing enhance the performances, effectively conveying the complexities of their relationships and motivations.

In addition to the visual aspects, the editing and pacing of the film contribute to the overall impact of the cinematography. Seamless transitions between scenes and well-executed montages create a sense of continuity and rhythm. The editing choices effectively build suspense and maintain the momentum of the narrative.

The Tourist’s cinematography not only complements and enhances the storytelling, but it also elevates the film’s aesthetic appeal. The visual elements work in harmony to create a visually stunning experience for viewers, providing a feast for the eyes while keeping them engaged and immersed in the world of the film.


The Tourist features an enchanting and evocative soundtrack that complements the film’s suspenseful and romantic atmosphere. The music, composed by James Newton Howard, enhances the emotions and intensifies the storytelling, immersing viewers into the world of the film.

The soundtrack captures the essence of the film’s setting in Venice, incorporating traditional Italian music and instruments. The use of accordion, mandolin, and classical strings creates a sense of nostalgia and adds a touch of elegance to the overall sound.

One standout piece from the soundtrack is the main theme, which captures the intrigue and allure of the story. The haunting melody, accompanied by swelling orchestration, perfectly encapsulates the mysterious and seductive nature of the narrative. The main theme is reprised throughout the film, serving as a musical motif that ties the story together.

Additionally, the soundtrack features a mix of instrumental cues and carefully selected songs. The instrumental cues enhance the suspense and action sequences, heightening the tension and adding a dynamic quality to the film. The songs, chosen to reflect the mood and tone of the scenes, provide an emotional depth and connection to the characters’ experiences.

The collaboration between James Newton Howard’s composition and the film’s cinematography is particularly effective. The music enhances the visual elements, creating a cohesive audio-visual experience. The sweeping aerial shots and intimate close-ups are expertly timed with the rise and fall of the music, creating a sense of harmony and synergy.

The soundtrack in The Tourist not only adds to the atmosphere of the film but also functions as a character in itself. The music becomes an integral part of the storytelling, heightening the emotions and weaving itself into the fabric of the narrative.

Overall, the soundtrack of The Tourist enhances the film’s suspense, romance, and visual beauty. James Newton Howard’s compositions, infused with traditional Italian influences, provide an immersive and memorable auditory experience that complements and enriches the storytelling.

Critical Reception

The Tourist received a mixed reception from critics upon its release. While the film showcased a talented cast, stunning visuals, and an intriguing premise, some reviewers felt that it fell short in terms of storytelling and execution.

One aspect that received praise was the performances of Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie. Critics applauded their chemistry and the depth they brought to their respective characters. Depp’s portrayal of Frank Tupelo was commended for its vulnerability and charm, while Jolie’s portrayal of Elise Clifton-Ward was described as alluring and mysterious.

Visually, the film was widely praised for its stunning cinematography. The picturesque landscapes of Venice were captured beautifully, with sweeping aerial shots and meticulous attention to detail. The use of warm, golden tones added to the film’s allure and visual appeal.

However, criticism was aimed at the film’s narrative, with some reviewers feeling that it lacked originality and had predictable plot twists. The complex web of deception and mistaken identity, while intriguing, was seen by some as overly convoluted, leading to a somewhat confusing storyline.

Another point of contention was the pacing of the film. Some critics felt that it lagged at times, with a slower build-up that did not match the level of tension and action expected in a thriller. This resulted in a lack of consistent momentum throughout the film.

Despite these criticisms, The Tourist was praised for its stylish and glamorous atmosphere, the chemistry between the lead actors, and the visual splendor of Venice. The film was acknowledged for its ability to transport viewers into a world of intrigue and suspense.

Box office success can also be considered as an indication of the film’s reception. The Tourist proved to be commercially successful, grossing over $278 million worldwide. This suggests that while it may not have resonated with all critics, it found an audience who appreciated its stylish presentation and alluring performances.

Box Office Performance

The Tourist was released in December 2010 and found moderate success at the box office, both domestically and internationally. The film’s intriguing premise, star-studded cast, and visually appealing setting helped attract audiences around the world.

Internationally, The Tourist performed particularly well, grossing over $211 million. It found success in markets such as Europe and Asia, where the allure of Venice and the star power of Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie resonated with moviegoers. The film’s stylish and glamorous atmosphere appealed to audiences seeking a thrilling and visually captivating cinematic experience.

In North America, The Tourist earned a total of approximately $67 million. While these numbers were not record-breaking, they still represented a respectable box office performance. Some critics suggested that the mixed reviews and the presence of other blockbuster releases during the same period may have impacted its domestic revenue.

It is worth noting that the film’s budget was estimated to be around $100 million, which included production costs as well as marketing and promotional expenses. Despite not reaching the same financial heights as some of the year’s highest-grossing films, The Tourist managed to recoup its budget and generate a reasonable profit.

The performance of The Tourist at the box office can be attributed to several factors, including the global appeal of its leading actors, the allure of its exotic setting, and the marketing efforts to highlight the film’s suspenseful and visually stunning elements.

Overall, while its box office performance may not have catapulted The Tourist into record-breaking success, it still managed to attract audiences and generate substantial revenue both internationally and domestically. The film’s stylish presentation and the star power of its cast ensured that it made its mark in the global cinematic landscape.

Fun Facts

Here are some fun facts about The Tourist that you may not know:

  1. The film was a remake of the 2005 French film “Anthony Zimmer.” The Tourist aimed to adapt the story to an international audience with its star-studded cast and stunning locations.
  2. Originally, Tom Cruise was attached to play the male lead, Frank Tupelo. However, he later dropped out, and the role went to Johnny Depp, who added his unique charm and quirks to the character.
  3. Angelina Jolie’s character, Elise, goes through numerous glamorous costume changes throughout the film. Her wardrobe consisted of more than 50 different outfits, showcasing her elegance and style.
  4. During the production, the filmmakers faced numerous challenges in shooting in the crowded and narrow streets of Venice. They had to close down some parts of the city and shoot early in the morning to capture the desired shots without interruption.
  5. Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, the director of The Tourist, won an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film for his critically acclaimed movie “The Lives of Others.” The Tourist marked his venture into mainstream Hollywood filmmaking.
  6. The film features stunning locations in addition to Venice. It also showcases the beautiful landscapes of Paris and the French Alps, adding to the overall allure of the story.
  7. The Tourist marks the first collaboration between Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie, two iconic actors who had gained international recognition for their respective roles in numerous successful films.
  8. The film’s production design team meticulously recreated the interiors of the lavish Hotel Danieli in Venice on a soundstage in Berlin. This allowed for more control over the filming environment and ensured the desired visual aesthetics.
  9. Although the reception from critics was mixed, The Tourist received three Golden Globe nominations in the categories of Best Motion Picture – Comedy or Musical, Best Actor – Comedy or Musical (Johnny Depp), and Best Actress – Comedy or Musical (Angelina Jolie).
  10. The Tourist offers viewers a glimpse into the glamorous and thrilling world of espionage, combining elements of romance, suspense, and mystery to create an entertaining cinematic experience.

These fun facts add an extra layer of intrigue to The Tourist and highlight some behind-the-scenes details that contribute to the film’s overall appeal.