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District B13 (Banlieue 13) (2006)


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

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

Average Rating: 6.7/10
Reviews Counted: 34
Fresh: 28
Rotten: 6

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


Average Rating: 3.6/5
User Ratings: 75,732


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, … More

R (for strong violence, some drug content and language)
Action & Adventure , Art House & International , Science Fiction & Fantasy
Directed By:
Written By:
Bibi Naceri , Luc Besson
In Theaters:
Sep 5, 2006
Box Office:
Magnolia Pictures - Official Site


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Critic Reviews for District B13 (Banlieue 13)

All Critics (114) | Top Critics (35) | Fresh (88) | Rotten (22) | DVD (14)

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

Full Review… | June 6, 2007
Top Critic

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

Full Review… | June 6, 2007
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

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

Full Review… | July 6, 2006
Time Out
Top 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.

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic

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

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Los Angeles Times
Top 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.

Full Review… | June 22, 2006
Wall Street Journal
Top Critic

When Belle is in motion, the movie excels.

Full Review… | October 6, 2013
Three Movie Buffs

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

Full Review… | February 5, 2010
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.

Full Review… | April 29, 2009
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.

Full Review… | July 4, 2007
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.

Full Review… | July 3, 2007
Projection Booth

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

Full Review… | January 2, 2007

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.

Full Review… | December 20, 2006
Cinema em Cena

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

Full Review… | November 20, 2006

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

October 27, 2006
Your Movies (

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.

Full Review… | October 9, 2006

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

Full Review… | August 23, 2006

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.

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

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

Full Review… | July 14, 2006
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.

Full Review… | July 8, 2006

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

Full Review… | July 7, 2006
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.

Full Review… | July 7, 2006
Daily Mirror [UK]

Audience Reviews for District B13 (Banlieue 13)


It's great over the top fun. A smart, funny and highly entertaining film packed with incredible wall to wall action. Ong Bak meets Escape from New York. An unstoppable thrill ride that delivers the goods and incredible aerobic stunts. Its a head bashing good time. It's fast, furious and spectacular entertainment. It's loaded with great chases, awesome fight sequences and terrific gun battles. Director, Pierre Morel and Writer/Producer, Luc Besson bring a tremendously exciting and new breed of action film. David Belle and Cyril Raffaelli bring on great chemistry as well as their incredible skills in martial arts and parkour. An 85 minute, testosterone-injected roller-coaster ride that's one of the most visually memorable action films in years.

Al S

Super Reviewer


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.

JY Skacto

Super Reviewer



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.

xGary Xx

Super Reviewer

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