Idris Elba plays a maverick CIA agent on the streets of Paris in James Watkins’ credibly preposterous and enjoyable thriller.
Idris jumps on rooftops and beats people up with insouciant toughness and this is a performance which has already lead to his odds on becoming the first black Bond being cut (at the time of writing, he’s 4/1, third favourite behind Tom Hardy and Tom Hiddleston.)
With the help of Richard Madden’s American pickpocket – and eventually, Charlotte Le Bon’s haplessly pretty wannabe anarchist – Idris creates a lot of havoc and stumbles across a plot involving corruption at the highest level, race and class riots, and a audacious bank heist.
It’s all done rather slickly but never too ridiculously, with a finger on the current political pulse as well as a boot in its face. There are car chases, guns, leaps, double crosses, baddies, Kelly Reilly in her sexy executive suit mode and some nice flourishes of dialogue: “You in love? You writing a novel? No, then what the fuck you doing in Paris?”
If Idris is to be Bond, however, he’ll have to work on his catchphrase. Collaring his prey following a long chase over rooftops, through windows and around a colourful Barbes street market, all he can come up with is: “Yeah motherfucker, now what?”
It’ll do, but doesn’t quite make one’s day, does it?