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Review Bastille Day (2016): Just OK!

genre: action, thriller

For some reason I was psyched about this title and now having seen the film I can't but help to be a little disappointed by it. It's not bad, but it's not really good either.

So first let me go into the good elements of this film. The pacing. It's consistent and fast enough. You won't get the chance to get bored. The action is adequate and entertaining enough but nothing special so don't get your hopes up if you were expecting something exciting. Although it does look like the main characters did most of their stunt work themselves. Which is something I can appreciate. And this brings me to the main draw of the film, Idris Elba. As far as I can recall I have never seen him performing badly and in this film it's no different. But it has to be said that this is clearly an Elba light only bringing what is minimally needed and nothing more.

One other reason why I looked forward to this film was Richard Madden. All he wanted was to be king in the north. I thought Richard Madden as Robb Stark was one of the most likable characters in Game of Thrones and was very unhappy with the events concerning him. (Damn you George R. R. Martin! BTW if you still want justice to be done check out Sharknado 3 where Martin gets what he deserves.) Therefore I looked forward to seeing him on the screen again and I can't say that it was an entirely successful reunion. He is playing a young con artist who gets wrapped up in a predicament involving CIA, the French police and a group of terrorists. I will spare you the story because it's been done a million times already. No point repeating it. But get this, they made his character an American. So suddenly The Scot needs to talk with an American accent and it is completely mystifying. Why? Because Richard Madden can't pull it of. It distracted me so much that it took a while for me to get warmed up to his character. There is absolutely no significant reason why his character needs to be American. He easily could have been Scottish, French or whatever. It would not have mattered a thing. Bad decision on part of director James Watkins. Actually it also becomes clear that his role could have been played by anyone. Apart from him being a con artist with some tricks up his sleeve there is nothing special about him. This also is the fault of James Watkins who has written the screenplay. He should have given Michael Mason (Richard Madden) something that would make for interesting dynamics between him and Elba's character Sean Briar. There is very little to no chemistry between Richard and Elba. Mostly because of the lack of characterization and lack of proper bonding moments.

Overall this won't feel like a waste of time but it's an incredible forgettable movie.

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