May 2, 2008

District B13

District B13 is a slick and well executed French action film directed by Pierre Morel. The film is based on a story written by action auteur Luc Besson (who also acted as one of the film’s producers). District B13 features real stunts (no CGI or other BS here) that compliment the films fluidity and perfectly calculated nature. Many of the stunts are in the form of the urban art of Parkour. Individuals involved in Parkour utilize urban terrain as an obstacle based art similar to skateboarding.

I must admit that I am not the biggest fan of action films. My favorite action films are usually directed by no other than Luc Besson. District B13 takes places in the not so distant future coming upon an age where the world is nearing an apocalypse. The city of District B13 is blocked in by an apartheid wall (similar to the one Israel has around the Palestinians). The French government has decided to put a wall around the city due to it’s uncontrollable crime and chaotic nature.

District B13 is quite reflexive of the ghettos in France today. Third world immigrants have flooded slums of France as cheap labor to make up for the physically inept French. Like the corrupt politician in District B13, French President Nicholas Sarkozy has also called third world population (directed at Muslims) “scum.” Various riots have also taken place in the slums, in protest of President Sarkozy. It is no doubt that District B13 is a social commentary on the current socio-political situations occurring today in France.

French President Nicholas Sarkozy
"You've had enough of this gang of scum, haven't you?" said Nicolas Sarkozy to residents in a Paris suburb affected by rioting. "Well we're going to get rid of them."

The two heroes of District B13, are a District B13 local and a slick cop. Their objective is to disassemble a bomb before it blows up the whole city. Of course, you can expect some surprises on the way. The cop and local have to fight a gang to get to the bomb. The gang’s lead muscle is a fat wigger by the name of K2 (which he gas shaved in the back of his head). Their leader is an ambiguous homosexual who has an addiction to cocaine. Expect to see some serious shit go down between the gang and it’s rich man’s candy fueled leader.

Various plot twists and turns occur in District B13 guaranteeing for a thinking mans joyride. I find it refreshing to watching an action film that actually has some thought put into it. I will be sure to follow the work of Pierre Morel and Luc Besson in the future. I just wonder whether or not Nicholas Sarkozy has seen District B13. I would love to hear his reaction.

-Ty E

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