"Brick Mansions" Movie Review: 2 Stars
by Roger Moore
A vulnerable tough guy who could hold his own in stunt brawls and car chases, an actor who said "bro" like he meant it, he will be missed.
But not for something like "Brick Mansions."
This A-level action / D-level plot is too typical of the lesser fare that Walker squeezed in between the increasingly popular, decreasingly intelligent "Fast & Furious" movies. He showed some range in "Hours," playing a newly widowed dad trying to save his incubator baby in a hospital that's been abandoned during Hurricane Katrina. But "Mansions" is like "Vehicle 19" or "Takers" -- dumb, noisy junk and the best he could do in a career that never really took off.
"Brick Mansions" is a remake of the French parkour thriller "District 13," a run, jump, punch and dangle picture from the Luc Besson ("Taken," "Transporter") action stable.
Set in the
Walker's Damien is out to finish off one last drug lord, Tremaine, played by the rapper RZA.
A bomb has been stolen and activated by the gangsters, who risk blowing up the entire middle of the city. Damien, the cop, must let the Frenchman be his guide as they dash in among the "Brick Mansions" to defuse it.
But the stupidity of the piece hangs over it from the start too. The mayor, perhaps relying too much on the French screenwriters who don't know what an acre is, refers to the Mansions as "20 acres in the middle of the city." That's a
The near future -- 2018 -- may be necessary in terms of the cars, weapons and cellphones the film uses. But depopulated
A fishnet-stockinged assassin named Rayzah (
Walker's best moments have him doing a deadpan double take at some impossible stunt Belle's Lino has just pulled off. That gives his character a moment to figure out how he can get the same results without having the wall-climbing, back-flipping and tumbling skills of his Cirque du
And moments like that, even in a dumb movie, add a little sting to the loss of Walker's amiable, sincere screen presence -- a nice guy who always made a convincingly righteous dude, and an actor who wasn't above letting himself in on the laugh that a lot of his movies were.
MPAA rating: PG-13 (for frenetic gunplay, violence and action throughout, language, sexual menace and drug material). Running time: 1:32.
"Brick Mansions" Movie Trailer
"Brick Mansions" is an action adventure film starring the late Paul Walker. The film is about old brick mansions left to dangerous people in Detroit. Watch as the lives of an undercover officer and a man fighting to stay alive cross paths, and what that means for each of them