France, 2004: District B13
Genre: Action, Dystopia
David Belle stars as an escaped convict guiding an undercover cop through the ghettos of Paris to deactivate an armed nuclear bomb.
It’s hard to imagine the parkour craze that swept the world happened only a few years ago, thanks in no small part to the founding of Youtube back in 2005. With traceur clubs sprouting up in cities everywhere, the film of Banlieue 13 secured an international release shortly thereafter, spreading the new sport even further. Boasting a high tempo soundtrack of French hip-hop and techno tracks, B13 is a fast-paced thrill ride with action sequences unlike anything seen before. There’s a certain stylized grittiness to the film, almost like a comic book movie, but with no CGI or wire-assisted stunts. The cinematography is above average, but it’s during the action sequences where it really shines. Everything moves and flows gorgeously from one shot to the next, even when using handheld cameras for the shaky effect.
More than anything, this is just a fun film to watch. The story itself is a little shaky, but the script is funny and the characters are immensely entertaining. It’s nice to see stuntman Cyril Raffaelli get some speaking time on camera, compared to his American appearances, and he makes good use of it here. David Belle gives a decent performance, which itself is pretty impressive for a non-actor as the lead. I imagine he was just having fun with the role, because he goes back and forth between bantering with Raffaelli and hamming it up for the camera. Still, the two leads have good chemistry on screen, making for a nice buddy picture dynamic to the whole thing. The supporting cast does well, with props given to the late Tony D’Amario for his role as right-hand baddie K2.
Up to its release, hardly anything like Belle’s work had been seen in theaters before. After, on the other hand, suddenly everyone from Bruce Willis to James Bond wanted in on the parkour action. It created a whole new venue of action to be explored, making this a landmark film in the truest sense of the phrase. Belle’s athleticism and agility are incredible, along with the rest of his stunt team. The chase choreography is a bit rough, but it doesn’t really detract from the actual performances. On the fight side of things, both the leads deliver some great scenes, including Raffaelli’s jaw-dropping fight through a casino. District B-13 is fast and fun, and represents the beginning for a whole generation of traceurs around the world. It’s definitely a must-see film for anyone.
Blog Link: http://fightfilmfriday.wordpress.com...-district-b13/
Good action movie. Watch it, don't think too much about the plot. Admire the athleticism, Dany Verissimo is cuteness there.
she certainly is.
and seriously, you couldn't find a better photo of her? i mean, i know she's done a lot of porn, but still.
Watching this movie is probably the only positive thing I can say I took away from a semester of french at uni.
Did you just compare my selection of a classy well dressed picture with some innocence, to your dolled up picture? Smoking is disgusting as well.
Originally Posted by Conde Koma
This was probably the only film I had to watch as part of my first year of law at university that didn't make me fall asleep.
..yeah I know, watching films for a law degree.. wtf?
"The hero and the coward both feel the same thing, but the hero projects his fear onto his opponent while the coward runs. 'Fear'. It's the same thing, but it's what you do with it that matters". - Cus D'Amato
CK finally reviewed a movie I have seen.
I enjoyed this movie for what it was, a high octane action romp with some uptempo music.
wait, really? you've got some catching up to do, there are some fantastic movies out there!
The euro-ricers were fun to watch too.
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