Feature

District B13

Two flexible Frenchmen dropkick their way through Paris.

The French thriller District B13 'œmakes everything Hollywood has lately done in the action genre look clumsy, dull, and stale,' said Richard Schickel in Time. In the not-too-distant future, a nuke is loose in Paris, and two men from opposite sides of the tracks must work together to save the day. Damien (Cyril Raffaelli), the sexy supercop, reluctantly teams up with the lawless Leíto (David Belle) to take down the evil slumlord Taha. That minimal plot sets off a barrage of wall crawls, flips, and kick-turns for Raffaelli and Belle, who invented the parkour action technique as stuntmen and carried it into their first feature roles. This is the first movie appearance for parkour, a martial arts form that uses the urban landscape as a jungle gym. These two are better gymnasts than actors, said Kevin Crust in the Los Angeles Times. The movie is dazzling when Raffaelli and Belle are running around, but 'œgrinds to a halt when they open their mouths.' The moronic screenplay by Luc Besson (La Femme Nikita) doesn't help either. But who needs cinematic substance when you've got pure testosterone? said David Hiltbrand in The Philadelphia Inquirer. Raffaelli's masterful martial arts technique 'œmakes Chuck Norris look like Orson Welles.' These moves will have Xtreme sport novices jumping off park benches all summer long.

Rating: R

Recommended

Israeli parliament approves coalition, Netanyahu out
Naftali Bennett.
changing of the guard

Israeli parliament approves coalition, Netanyahu out

Biden, Putin express openness to cybercriminal exchange
Joe Biden.
depends on what you mean

Biden, Putin express openness to cybercriminal exchange

Netanyahu goes 'scorched earth'
Benjamin Netanyahu.
loose cannon

Netanyahu goes 'scorched earth'

Biden says he's 'satisfied' with G7's final stance on China
G7 summit.
that'll do for now

Biden says he's 'satisfied' with G7's final stance on China

Most Popular

Georgia election workers reportedly received a 'torrent' of threats
Trump rally.
The big lie

Georgia election workers reportedly received a 'torrent' of threats

Bernie Sanders wants to know if cannabis reporter is 'stoned' right now
Bernie Sanders.
Sounds dope

Bernie Sanders wants to know if cannabis reporter is 'stoned' right now

The week's best photojournalism
Elephants.
Photos

The week's best photojournalism