22 Bullets [l'immortel]

"Very Good"

22 Bullets [l'immortel] Review


As violent as this mob thriller is, it also has a terrific sense of its central characters, focussing on strong emotions and moral decisions. And even though it's overcomplicated, the result is a sleek and very classy.

Charly (Reno) retired from his job as a Marseilles mob boss to spend time with his family. But someone has it in for him, and after he survives being shot 22 times, Charly and a cop (Fois) start looking for who did it. Charly immediately turns to the other local bosses (Merad and Berry), childhood friends with whom he took a vow of loyalty. But soon all-out war breaks out between thugs on various sides, and the division of loyalty isn't as clear-cut as it should be.

Reno is terrific in the role as a haunted man who knows he can never escape his violent past ("Spilled blood never dries," he says). He's such a compelling central character that he holds our attention even as seemingly hundreds of other people crowd around him. It's virtually impossible to keep track of who's who and which side everyone's on, but as Charly steadily moves through each scene, like the calm point in a storm, we feel like we're in safe hands.

And Berry has an assured directorial hand, skilfully navigating both the action and emotion to draw us in right from the opening shot. Yes, this is still a Besson-produced romp, with loads of brutal set pieces and an almost overpowering sense of violent retribution, but unlike Besson's other big thrillers (like Taken), this one has a soulfulness that lets us identify with its characters even in the most grisly situations.

And it gets very grisly indeed. For someone who has taken a vow of pacifism, Charly metes out extremely brutal vengeance. In Besson World, he is driven to this by the viciousness of those who are coming after him. Fair enough. Except that Charly exceeds everyone else's cruelty at each turn while indulging in rather selective morality. This senseless mayhem makes us pause, knowing that something is deeply wrong with the premise. But it's so entertaining that we let the filmmakers off the hook.



Facts and Figures

Genre: Action/Adventure

Budget: $24M

Production compaines: TF1 Films Production, EuropaCorp

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer: , Pierre-Ange Le Pogam

Starring: as Charly Matteï, as Yasmina Telaa, as Martin Beaudinard, as Marie Goldman, as Aurelio Rampoli, Joey Starr as Pistachio, Dominique Thomas as Ange Palardo, as Tony Zacchia, Luc Palun as Pascal Vasetto, Martial Bezot as Franck Rabou, Daniel Lundh as MaleTelaa, Joséphine Berry as Eva Matteï, Max Baissette de Malglaive as Anatole MatteMatteï

Also starring:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Hampstead Movie Review

Hampstead Movie Review

Deliberately appealing to older audiences, this undemanding comedy-drama comes with a hint of social relevance...

The Book of Henry Movie Review

The Book of Henry Movie Review

Apparently, this offbeat script had been making the rounds in Hollywood for some 20 years...

Transformers: The Last Knight Movie Review

Transformers: The Last Knight Movie Review

With this fifth Transformers movie, it seems clear that Michael Bay is still trying to...

Churchill Movie Review

Churchill Movie Review

This drama about the iconic British prime minister tells a darkly personal story set over...

Gifted Movie Review

Gifted Movie Review

This is one of those films that dances right up to the edge of soapy...

Whitney: Can I Be Me Movie Review

Whitney: Can I Be Me Movie Review

Notorious British filmmaker Nick Broomfield teams up with Austrian music documentary producer Rudi Dolezal to...

The Mummy Movie Review

The Mummy Movie Review

To launch their new Dark Universe franchise, Universal has taken an approach that mixes murky...

Advertisement
My Cousin Rachel Movie Review

My Cousin Rachel Movie Review

Daphne du Maurier's 1951 mystery-romance novel has been adapted for theatre, radio, TV and film,...

Wilson Movie Review

Wilson Movie Review

It's never helpful when a comedy becomes a bit too smug about its own quirkiness....

Interlude in Prague Movie Review

Interlude in Prague Movie Review

A fictionalised story from the life of Wolfgang Mozart, this lavishly produced period drama is...

The Hippopotamus Movie Review

The Hippopotamus Movie Review

This British satirical comedy may be a bit of a mess, but since it's based...

Detour Movie Review

Detour Movie Review

This may look like a rather typical American indie thriller, but British filmmaker Christopher Smith...

Wonder Woman Movie Review

Wonder Woman Movie Review

Boldly optimistic, this action-packed adventure breathes fresh life into the DC universe with a welcome...

Baywatch Movie Review

Baywatch Movie Review

Clearly, it's a risky proposition adapting a cheesy vintage TV series for the big screen:...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.