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4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
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on 3 March 2012
I am an absolute fan of French films. Well on Film 4 the other night they showed a French film, District 13, which is absolutely fantastic.

It is a blend of outstanding Parkour (free running) action, futuristic science fiction and supreme martial art action combined.

If you can appreciate:
> Magnificent Parkour physical talent
> Diversity in martial arts talent

.. then this movie will gobsmack you.

Being an amateur martial artist myself (Eskrima/mild karate mostly), I can more than appreciate how every single individual can present a very unique angle and stance of martial art.

If you are only familiar with Bruce Lee and Chuck Norris then you haven't really seen what diversity in martial arts can present.

The main star of this film, Cyril Raffaelli, presented to me not only unimaginable Parkour talent but a very solid yet graceful style of martial arts, which when combined together leave your jaw a thousand miles beneath your feet.

Although I recognised a handful of his moves, for the most part his method and approach to combat was very firm, very surprising and of a very absolute deliverance. His movements were absolutely unique and fantastic entertainment to watch.

So after watching that film I was considering buying the DVD. Then, the following night I was flicking through the channels and to my delight Film 4 were showing another film starring Cyril Raffaelli - District 13: Ultimatum. This turned out to be a sequel to District 13 and yet again it was filled with yet more outstanding Parkour, martial arts and edge-of-your-seat action.

I'd say I was more into the first movie, but the sequel is still more than worth watching since it presents not just more of the same talents but in yet more different ways.
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on 3 September 2010
I initially caught the tail end of D13 on tv one night and thought it was worth purchasing on the basis of what I had seen. I was not disappointed. ALthough in no way resembling the plots of Mad Max or Fistful of Dollars, D13 reminds me of those movies due to its sheer rawness, energy, and low budget production which in no way hinders the film - in fact it's an asset, especially once you compare D13U with the original. I'm a great fan of Jackie Chan (early and mid career stuff), so I guess I'm a bit of a sucker for this type of film, but the action sequences from our 2 heroes are nothing short of spectacular, and I must make special mention of Taha (the villain of D13) who I thought was brilliant: just what a villain should be, and the homage to Scarface was nicely 'executed' as well. D13U is almost a big budget remake of D13, although there is a variation in plot, the sequence of the movie is very very similar, but D13U is "ultimately" lacking that sparkle which makes D13 such an enjoyable movie. Anyway, I'd very much recommend the boxset, the featurettes are very interesting, and the out-takes a la Jackie Chan on D13 is lol good - shame they didn't include some on D13U. Finally, French is such a good language for these movies, the cadence and staccatto nature of the language really contributes to the overall dramatic effect of the films (don't watch them in English!!). My overall recommendation? - buy - you will not be disappointed. Thanks also to Amazon for their usual impeccable service.
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on 5 April 2013
I got these films for the parkour sequences, and they did not disappoint. David Belle is quite simply out of this world in those, and Cyril Raffaelli also does very well, especially in the fight sequences. I also very much enjoyed the laid-back laconic humour of some of the dialogue. Incidentally, I found the subtitled films far better than the dubbed versions.

The plots are distinctly on the fantastic side, but no more so than the Bond films. In both films, a thumbnail of the plot is that a nuclear warhead is loose in one of the Districts in the city (District 13, would you believe?) where law and order has broken down. I don't want to spoil the enjoyable twists in the tale, but basically, an "odd couple" pairing of a maverick cop (Captain Damian Tomaso, played by Cyril Raffaelli) and a District 13 denizen (Leito, David Belle) get together and do something about it. There is violence, but in my view it is integral to the plot, and is neither gratuitous nor nasty.

OK, no Oscars, but some of the action is absolutely superb, and I have spent evenings watching many films that I have not enjoyed nearly as much as these two.
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on 13 January 2010
D13 (the first film) is better than the sequel (D13 Ultimatum), but the package with both is a good deal. The action is well choreographed and filled with humour, this is French action: violence with Gallic humour and a touch of class, a welcome relief from your typical Hollywood over-the-top yelling, shooting and blowing up sets by the dozen. Luc Besson in the production/writing team ensures that the plot has some clever emotional angles (better in the first film).
These are not "serious" films, and they work because they do not take themselves seriously. They provide entertainment and they do it well, albeit with social commentary in the background. Sometimes the best way to deliver a message is through satire embedded in apparently "light" entertainment.
Definitely "guy flicks", but for guys with more than a dozen brain cells and an ounce of sensitivity.
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on 1 January 2014
Exciting, exhausting and exhilarating from the word go; if you're an action fan-look no further. These films are a total adrenaline rush. I don't think I've ever seen so much incident packed into what are relatively short running times. French films always seem to be so much more stylish than Hollywood productions and these are no exception. The 2 main stars 'Leito' (David Belle) and 'Damien' (Cyril Raffaelli) interact so well and their numerous fight sequences with both villains and crooked cops will surely leave you breathless with their over-the-top audacity. To quote another film title, this really is 'As Good as it Gets'.
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on 21 December 2009
Another great movie from the same people who made Leon and Transporter. If you enjoy watching the two latter films, I'm definitely sure you will love D13!

Full of action and explosions, specially the second disc (Ultimatum). I love everything on these films except the English dubbing. I don't really like subtitles so I chose to play the English dub.
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on 15 December 2015
Good action films. Seem to have become classics (nice deal on both films).
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on 29 October 2016
its ok
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on 20 February 2014
If you like parqour(excuse the spelling)you will like these dvds.Very decent action
and original as well.If you like Fast and The Furious ,and movies in that genre you
will lap this up.Buy it!
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on 8 February 2015
great dvd better than I though
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