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District B13(Banlieue 13)

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France · 2004
Rated R · 1h 24m
Director Pierre Morel
Starring David Belle, Cyril Raffaelli, Tony D'Amario, Dany Verissimo-Petit
Genre Action, Thriller, Science Fiction

Set in dystopian Paris, Banlieue 13 is the worst ghetto in the city --- so bad that it's been entirely walled off. When word gets out that the gangs who run it have a nuclear bomb, an undercover cop teams up with an ex-criminal to stop them, but the clock is ticking.

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What are critics saying?


Entertainment Weekly by

The big innovation here is that the two nimble leads, stuntmen-turned-stars, are devotees of parkour, a fancy French word for the fluid use of urban environments as jungle gyms.


The Hollywood Reporter by Frank Scheck

By most standards, District B13 is a fairly routine summer action movie, albeit one in French. But what makes it unique are the truly amazing and kinetic action scenes featuring Parkour pioneer Belle and co-star Cyril Raffaelli.


Time by Richard Schickel

Makes everything Hollywood has lately done in the action genre look clumsy, dull and stale. It is a short, nonstop stuntfest that, by going back to basics and placing them on the screen with simple, breathless stylishness, turns what is essentially a lowlife movie form into something one is not embarrassed to call "pure" cinema--all energy, movement and high kinetic wit.


The A.V. Club by Scott Tobias

Morel tries to keep the energy up for 85 minutes straight, but the film never manages to top itself, and in spite of the political overtones, it doesn't provide much thematic sustenance.

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