20 June 2013 | Red-Barracuda
Highly stylized crime thriller with a pedestrian story
A couple of ageing club owners start to have a night from hell when a vicious criminal from their past is released from jail and wants vengeance for their role in his capture.
Paris Countdown is a crime thriller that could be described as an exercise in style over substance. To be honest, generally speaking I don't mind this very much as cinematic style is a very seductive thing. In the case of this movie though, while the visual presentation is very slick indeed, the story isn't all that involving. In fact, it's a fairly clichéd affair on the whole, with lots of typical crime characters and settings involved in a plot that doesn't hold any surprises for those who have seen many films from this genre. It sometimes drags a little too and it's always welcome when the action and thrills kick in, which wasn't often enough in my view. Still, it looks pretty good and has pretty impressive cinematography which often makes good use of its Paris setting. There is also a very well executed slow-motion shoot-out in a hallway – more of this inventiveness would have been very welcome. The soundtrack is, typically for a Euro crime film, a selection of pounding clubland tunes – nothing wrong with that of course but, again, nothing new.
So there is plenty of style to burn here but it's not especially inspired.