Sunday, August 10, 2014

District 13, Paris may be about to burn...

2004's "District 13" (aka "District B13") is an action thriller currently available on Netflix.  B Movie fans will appreciate that every character is an exclamation mark....  Why reason, when you can shoot?  Why take the stairs, when you can jump off the building?  Why apply the brakes if you can ram roadblocks?  Why clean up a neighborhood if you can prevent a nuke from ruining the whole day?  This film succeeds as an action-fest, but if you are so inclined, you may choose to notice some flippant social commentary, as well.
The plot:  Paris, six years into the future.  Crime is out of control, and the slums are ruled by drug gangs, infinitely better equipped than the cops.  The government walls off the worst one gets one gets out.  B13 is the worst.  Taha (Bibi Naceri) is the crime lord.  Leito (David Belle) is a vigilante force, determined to be Taha's foil.  As the movie begins, Leito has stolen and destroyed a big drug shipment meant for Taha, and K2 (Tony D'Amario) is dispatched to kill him.  Leito escapes, jumping from rooftop to rooftop, and using neat martial arts to disable several of Taha's henchmen.  Unable to capture Leito, Taha kidnaps Leito's sister, Lola (Dany Verissimo-Petit).  She is a feisty gal, and is all fight.  Less than an hour after her abduction, Leito drops through Taha's skylight and rescues her (above picture, Leito, Taha, and Lola).  Leito flees to the police, but corrupt cops give Lola back to Taha, and arrest Leito, but not before Leito kills the corrupt captain.  Lola is then drugged by Taha, and kept in bondage by his side.
Uh oh!  An experimental neutron bomb is hijacked and now in the possession of Taha.  An elite cop, Damien (Cyril Raffaelli), is assigned to penetrate B13 and diffuse the thing, which will detonate in less than 24 hours.  The cops get Leito out of prison to lead Damien in (see picture above).  An uncomfortable alliance, but Leito wants to rescue his sister.  The two make a very loud entrance back into B13 and are instantly dealing with Taha.  Now Taha's prisoners, the two must escape, repel about 40 of Taha's heavily armed thugs, find the bomb, rescue the girl, and.....  If those were their only challenges, life would be so simple.  Remember, Damien works for the you figure his bosses  may be fibbing to him? Together Leito and Damien realize they are on their own, as Taha and the government have nefarious motives.
Will our dynamic duo diffuse the bomb, and save Lola?  Does the government really want the bomb diffused?  What does Taha have planned with an arsenal bigger than that of most armies, and a neutron bomb?  This film is a lot of fun, and caters to the ADD crowd. Not three seconds ever go by without a punch, gunshot, car crash, someone jumping off a building, or a martial arts fight.  Both Leito and Damien have a comic book appeal, and are both driven by virtue.  See "District 13," and enjoy the ride.  

1 comment:

  1. I wish I could get Netflix, alas, our connection at home is so slow I can't even watch adorable kittens on youtube.
    I love action films. It's really hard for me to sit for over an hour straight unless there's a lot of stuff going on. I hope I'll get to check this out someday...