Bastille Day (2016)


Action | Thriller


James Watkins


UK | France | USA


Idris Elba, Richard Madden, Charlotte Le Bon, Kelly Reilly José Garcia, Anatol Yusef, Eriq Ebouaney


A young con artist (Richard Madden) and a former CIA agent (Idris Elba) embark on an anti-terrorist mission in France.


Not really advertised - at least in my country -, I decided to watch this film because of its leads, Idris Elba and Richard Madden, and they were not a total disappointment. And "Bastille Day"? Well, it's another story. While it is a decent action thriller, it doesn't bring anything new to the genre. 

First up is the plot which couldn't have been more thin, predictable or implausible, stretching credulity to its limits. And it's quite annoying, because it starts off quite well and with a good concept, but then the twists that seems so well planned aren't that wow, and the whole thing is a bit of a disappointment.

The characters are another flaw. Just like the plot, they are thinly written, shallow, lack personality and the buddy feeling between the main characters, the CIA agent and the young delinquent, never really develops. "Central Intelligence" did a great job there. 

On the other side of the coin there's the action. The sequences are well done and the fast pace is perfect to make the experience a little bit more entertaining and exciting. But, in my opinion, there is too much unnecessary violence that make no sense at all.

As for the cast, the charismatic Idris Elba is simply awesome in the role of the CIA agent and shows people why he could/should be the next James Bond. Anyway, if they think he is too street, whatever that means, it's better if they cast someone else, Elba does need James Bond. Richard Madden, however, was a bit of a let down. I was really interested in seeing him outside of "Game of Thrones" but he never manages to shine. But probably I should blame the writers, not him.


  1. Bastille Day is a poor man's Die Hard With A Vengeance mixed with the visual aesthetic and violence of the original Taken. Neither lead actor was well serviced by this film, with rudimentary plotting, atrocious dialogue and hackneyed characters to play. Even the action, perhaps the one well manufactured constant in the genre, felt limp and insipid. Overall, it's a time-waster but I expected more.

  2. Idris Elba and Richard Madden are two of the hottest men on Earth so I'll see it for that, but yeah, the rest of the movie doesn't look that great.