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District B13 (Banlieue 13) (2004)



Average Rating: 7/10
Reviews Counted: 110
Fresh: 88 | Rotten: 22

A nonstop thrill ride, District B13's dizzying action sequences more than make up for any expository flaws.


Average Rating: 6.8/10
Critic Reviews: 33
Fresh: 27 | Rotten: 6

A nonstop thrill ride, District B13's dizzying action sequences more than make up for any expository flaws.



liked it
Average Rating: 3.6/5
User Ratings: 75,481

My Rating

Movie Info

A nuclear weapon has been stolen by the most powerful gang in Paris' treacherous, walled-in ghetto, and it's up to a determined cop and a vigilante criminal in search of his sister to infiltrate the sector, save the girl, and get the bomb out of the bad guys' hands in an action-packed tale produced by Luc Besson and directed by cinematographer Pierre Morel. The year is 2010, and a massive wall has been erected to keep the violence of the Paris ghetto confined to District B13. Within these walls,

Sep 5, 2006


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All Critics (114) | Top Critics (34) | Fresh (88) | Rotten (22) | DVD (14)

A message-based actioner that's fast, dumb fun.

June 6, 2007 Full Review Source: Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

I was delighted by the balletic and acrobatic stunts, some of which evoke Tarzan.

June 6, 2007 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

As 85-minute testosterone binges go, you could do a whole lot worse.

July 6, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

District B13 doesn't waste time with fake personality clashes. Both lead actors are amazingly fluid athletes, and during the many getaway and shoot-'em-up sequences, there is a minimum of special effects or wire choreography.

June 24, 2006 Full Review Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The typically moronic plot simply gets in the way of what might have been a super-ambitious sneaker commercial.

June 24, 2006 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Real-life events have overtaken District B13, and they give this feverish, yet oddly flat French action adventure a whiff of substance to go along with its spectacular stunts.

June 22, 2006 Full Review Source: Wall Street Journal
Wall Street Journal
Top Critic IconTop Critic

When Belle is in motion, the movie excels.

October 6, 2013 Full Review Source: Three Movie Buffs
Three Movie Buffs

This action film from Luc Besson's B-movie factory is one of his best.

February 5, 2010 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

Comes off more like a theme park show than an actual film, it's there to deliver stunts and never an actual story.

April 29, 2009 Full Review Source: Cinema Crazed
Cinema Crazed

the most memorable parts of District 13 actually precede the unfolding of its main plot, which, much like the thermonuclear device on which it is premised, is never allowed to fulfill its explosive promise.

July 4, 2007 Full Review Source: Eye for Film
Eye for Film

Both smart and direct, District B13 is the kind of lean, mean action film most of America's working directors only wish they could pull off.

July 3, 2007 Full Review Source: Projection Booth
Projection Booth

Nifty action flick influenced by Hong Kong cinema that includes a critique of French racism against immigrant community.

January 2, 2007 Full Review Source:

O roteiro quase inexistente é uma mera desculpa para que o filme apresente ao espectador diversas seqüências de ação absolutamente sensacionais criadas a partir do parkour.

December 20, 2006 Full Review Source: Cinema em Cena
Cinema em Cena

There's something refreshing about an action film that actually gives a damn about more than explosions.

November 20, 2006 Full Review Source: Movie Views

Genre fans will get a kick from the martial-arts action, and that's all District B13 needs to do.

October 27, 2006
Sun Newspapers of Cleveland

In his feature directing debut, cinematographer Pierre Morel has delivered an adrenaline-packed picture that sold its brains to the devil in exchange for spectacular fight and chase scenes.

October 9, 2006 Full Review Source: Reno Gazette-Journal

District B13 is an apocalyptic action message movie with a distinct French flare.

August 23, 2006 Full Review Source: | Comment (1)

The highly stylized result feels barren of both texture and imagination.

July 14, 2006
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

For a film that's so light on its feet, "B13" seems rooted in what's really happening on the ground.

July 14, 2006 Full Review
Capital Times (Madison, WI)

If there's a sequel...I'm there!

July 14, 2006 Full Review Source: JoBlo's Movie Emporium
JoBlo's Movie Emporium

A 90-minute feature simply showing [David] Belle's stunts with no frills would be great; unfortunately, they only account for about 10 minutes - the rest of the time, Belle is called upon to act.

July 8, 2006 Full Review Source: Guardian [UK]
Guardian [UK]

The cast hurls itself into the comic-book violence, while the stunt choreography and razor-sharp editing are exhilarating.

July 7, 2006 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

There are plenty of impressive gunfights and some wicked martial arts sequences here, but the film is most likely to be remembered for its emphasis on free running, a dizzying physical technique in which the cast sprint, leap and roll through the city.

July 7, 2006 Full Review Source: Daily Mirror [UK]
Daily Mirror [UK]

Audience Reviews for District B13 (Banlieue 13)

Pierre Morel gets District B13 in, over, and around the block.Everything about this film is quick. The pacing of the story feels the need to sprint to the finish, yet it easy enough to follow. The dialogue is straight to the point and hastily executed. Do the math and it all leads to a brief run time of 70 minutes. Talk about short and sweet.The action relies heavily on parkour and the introduction for each of the protagonists deliver some highly amusing pieces. The stunts are solid and the sequences are fast-paced with little in the way of slow motion. The fighting is also stylized with some parkour elements thrown in.David Belle and Cyril Raffaelli are all over the place, while Dany Verissimo provides some much needed girl power on screen. Bibi Naceri and Tony D'Amario are your typical drug gangsters.There really isn't much to District B13, but as a quick action adventure, it delivers.
June 6, 2013
JY Skacto

Super Reviewer

May 21, 2013
Directors Cat
Directors Cat

Super Reviewer

A crime riddled district of Paris is walled up and abandoned by the authorities, but when a neutron bomb is stolen by its crime boss, a lone cop is sent in to defuse it. Escape From New York meets Ong Bak in this frenetic French action flick that's very much in the tradition of Luc Besson. The whole "near future" premise is really just an excuse to make you swallow the greater implausibilites in the plot, as there's little here to mark it out as sci-fi. It's really just a series of high octane shoot outs and bone crunching fight sequences as a buddy duo join forces to reach their respective objectives; the bomb and the rescue of a resident's sister. Thankfully there's no corny love interest and the buddy partnership works quite well because of the lack of idiotic one liners and macho bullshit you'd get in a Hollywood equivalent. It's a total no-brainer and the plot gets thinner and thinner as it goes (the best sequences are all at the beginning, before they set out on their mission) but the boys will enjoy the male bonding and non stop action and the girls will enjoy the sight of a constantly shirtless David Belle. Dumb but fun.
August 15, 2012
xGary Xx

Super Reviewer

It may not serve as the most original film when you think about the story, but the atmosphere, the look, and the events are all very new and awesome to watch. As two unlikely men are teamed up to disarm a bomb stolen from a gang in Paris, they find trouble along the way, falling into predicaments leading to action sequences that will take your breath away. The choreography is brilliant, the action is top-notch, the story is believable but does reach a few over-the-top moments, and the editing is done so well that any viewer will be happy that they can follow every move by the main cast. From parkour to true explosive action, District B13 is a full-on adrenaline-fuelled-thrill-ride.
August 15, 2011
KJ Proulx

Super Reviewer

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Latest News on District B13 (Banlieue 13)

March 13, 2007:
"District B13" Sequel Yes, American Remake No
The Luc Besson produced "District B13" made such waves in Hollywood, introducing Parkour...
July 26, 2006:
Magnolia Digs Into the Crayon Box
You probably know Magnolia Pictures as the distributor of foreign/arthouse fare like "District...
June 1, 2006:
Critical Consensus: "The Break-Up" Gets Dumped
This week at the movies brings us "The Break-Up," a hotly-anticipated dark comedy...

Foreign Titles

  • District B-13 (Banlieue 13) (DE)
  • District 13 (Banlieue 13) (UK)
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