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 LeÃto (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.