Review: Brick Mansions

Any action movie enthusiast would be excited to catch Brick Mansions. For starters, this is the last movie starring the late actor Paul Walker. The casting of the former Fast & Furious star means that exciting car chase scenes are inevitable.

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Expect lots of running and jumping too, as the movie stars David Belle, one of the founders of the increasingly popular parkour sport (the art of getting past obstacles in an urban setting efficiently and quickly in style). Belle was also from the original French version of the film, a testament that his talents are highly sought across the Atlantic.

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The movie is set in a dystopian Detroit in the near future, where the most dangerous criminals reside in a self-contained district of brick mansions, forsaken by the government. With crime and drug dealing rampantly growing, the government builds a wall around the area to ensure the crime is contained.

Crime is rampant, and the reason that motivates our 2 protagonists. Lino (played by David Belle) is an ex-convict who has lived in Brick Mansions for his entire adult life and has tried to save the city from the drug trade. Damien Collier (played by Paul Walker) is an undercover veteran police officer whose goal is to take down the criminals and drug lords to avenge his father’s death.

In a twist of events, Damien is tasked to infiltrate Brick Mansions to disarm a bomb that could devastate the whole city. Likewise, Lino has to rescue his girlfriend from Tremaine (played by RZA), the drug lord of Brick Mansions. The action unfolds as both characters work together reluctantly, and the bromance chemistry between the odd pair while kicking gangster butt is rather interesting. 

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Despite the subpar plot, the movie delivers on the action where the stunts performed by the 2 leads are just out of this world and leave one wondering how to achieve those killer abs.

However, the action sequences can sometimes be too confusing for their own good. Slow motion shots can take your breath away, but having one too many can be tiresome and nauseating for some.

 More was expected from director Camille Delamarre, who also had a hand in other action thrillers like Taken 2 and Transporter 3.

The writing could have been a little more sophisticated, or funny for that matter. Light humor or even a cold slapstick gag might help to dramatize an otherwise flat script.

Brick Mansions is worth watching for its ingenious combo of parkour stunts and actors who could jump, flip or leap across rooftops convincingly. However, it is sad to note that the last Paul Walker movie wasn’t exactly his best.


Rating: 2.5/5

Release Date: 24/04/14

Runtime: 90 minutes

Language: English

Censorship Rating: PG13

Genre: Action, Adventure, Crime, Thriller

Director: Camille Delamarre

Main Actors: Paul Walker, David Belle, RZA