(France/Canada - 2014)
Directed by Camille Delamarre. Written by Luc Besson. Cast: Paul Walker, David Belle, RZA, Gouchy Boy, Catalina Denis, Ayisha Issa, Carlo Rota, Bruce Ramsay, Andreas Apergis, Frank Fontaine, Richard Zeman, Robert Maillet, Ron Lea, Mark Camacho. (PG-13, 90 mins)
The 2004 French-language Luc Besson production BANLIEUE 13 became a blockbuster hit in Europe before its 2006 US release as DISTRICT B13 (which led to the 2009 sequel DISTRICT B13: ULTIMATUM) and succeeded in both the mainstreaming of parkour and putting Besson protege and future TAKEN director Pierre Morel on the map. Given the ubiquitousness of parkour over the subsequent years--including a memorable action sequence in 2006's 007 reboot CASINO ROYALE--it seems odd that Besson would not only fashion a belated, demanded-by-no-one English-language remake now but also that he would utilize one of BANLIEUE's stars, French parkour master David Belle, in the same role he played a decade ago. Again scripted by Besson (with regular collaborator Robert Mark Kamen credited as "artistic consultant") and directed by another in the seemingly endless line of Besson disciples--in this case, his frequent editor Camille Delamarre, making his feature directing debut--BRICK MANSIONS moves the action from the slums of Paris to a walled-off housing project in the near-future war zone of Detroit in 2018.
Yakavetta character from THE BOONDOCK SAINTS), and has had his eyes on Tremaine for a while: Collier's dad was a legendary Detroit cop killed by Tremaine during a botched raid on Brick Mansions years earlier. The mayor (Bruce Ramsay) and the top Detroit brass send Collier into Brick Mansions in classic Snake Plissken-style when Tremaine gains possession of a neutron bomb that's set to go off in ten hours. Posing as a prisoner, Collier finds himself in a transport with Lino, who's determined to rescue his ex (Catalina Denis), who's being held captive by Tremaine, who's also demanding $30 million in his Hawaiian bank account (?) to not launch the neutron bomb right at downtown Detroit. Amidst bickering and constant disagreement, Collier and Lino team up to take out Tremaine and his Brick Mansions army and stop the bomb from going off...
...if they don't kill each other first!
|Paul Walker (1973-2013)