Brick Mansions Preview

As Patrick and Jamie skulk behind the numerous wicker chairs populating Wicker Park, they try to come up with a plan. Could they stand in for Past Jamie and Patrick and trick the G-Men into giving them the task instead? No. As Jamie notes, rulez are coolz and when given a very important job they aren’t ones to drop the ball like a couple of unprofessional idiots. But that gets them thinking, what if they did follow through? At that they jump out of the bushes and right in the path of the G-Men. “Yo, G-Men, you looking for us?” The G-Men are a bit confused. These Bad Movie Twins look at least ten or eleven years older than the studs in the photos they have. But they shrug their shoulders and agree that since only the secret Time Cop Corporation has the technology of time travel there isn’t anything to worry about. Jamie and Patrick yawn as the G-Men go into intricate detail about the mission they already know everything about. “Yeah, yeah, yeah, high level terrorists in Budapest. Right? We got it,” Jamie says, trying to hurry them along. Now they look double confused and a bit suspicious. “No, not terrorists in Budapest. How did you…” they ask, eyeing Jamie sideways, but eventually shrug again and continue, ‘It’s actually pretty low level terrorists in Paris. Some much higher level terrorists broke down on their way to Budapest. They were carrying a powerful weapon that every baddie in the world would want. It was stolen from the truck and we need to get it back. You up for the job?” Jamie and Patrick gulp and nod their heads. “Oh and one more thing,” the G-Men say, “Hope you guys brought some Mountain Dew.” That’s right! We’re watching Brick Mansion starring Paul Walker. It’s a remake of District B13 that I remember seeing in theaters in college… we didn’t see this one in theaters for obvious reasons. Let’s go!

Brick Mansions (2014) – BMeTric: 44.4; Notability: 29

StreetCreditReport.com – BMeTric: top 10.4%; Notability: top 19.2%; Rotten Tomatoes: top 20.6%; Higher BMeT: Left Behind, The Legend of Hercules, Ouija, God’s Not Dead, Devil’s Due, The Pyramid, A Haunted House 2, Tammy, Sex Tape, I, Frankenstein, Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones, Behaving Badly, Outcast, Annabelle, Everly, Annie, Vampire Academy, Pompeii, Addicted, Seventh Son, and 6 more; Higher Notability: Transformers: Age of Extinction, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Exodus: Gods and Kings, Transcendence, A Million Ways to Die in the West, Dracula Untold, Dumb and Dumber To, The Monuments Men, Annie, Seventh Son, Winter’s Tale, Think Like a Man Too, Horrible Bosses 2, Need for Speed, The Expendables 3, Men, Women & Children, Ride Along, The Nut Job, Vampire Academy, Pompeii, and 28 more; Lower RT: Behaving Badly, Left Behind, Cam2Cam, Outcast, I, Frankenstein, The Legend of Hercules, Ouija, Some Kind of Beautiful, Addicted, A Haunted House 2, The Angriest Man in Brooklyn, The Cobbler, Search Party, God’s Not Dead, The Best of Me, No Good Deed, Seventh Son, Winter’s Tale, Taken 3, The Nut Job, and 31 more; Notes: Middling across the board. Part of the problem, as I see it, was the competition in the mid-2010s was stiff. Left Behind? Legend of Hercules? Devil’s Due? It is kind of impossible this film could compete with those heavy hitters.

RogerEbert.com – 2.5 stars – The action may be serious, but “Brick Mansions” doesn’t take itself too seriously. It’s a ridiculous movie that has the decency to acknowledge that it’s ridiculous.

(So … good for what it is? Roger Ebert would be proud. Especially in the 2000s he was all about the self-aware bad film actually being good. I think the problem is that this was already made from a self-aware film that also happened to be pretty good.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4CzcsN4k9FM/

(I mean, it looks kind of cool I suppose. The only issue is the French actor (who was in the original) doesn’t seem like he can keep up with the dialogue. But we’ll see.)

DirectorsCamille Delamarre – ( Future BMT: The Transporter Refueled; BMT: Brick Mansions; Notes: Not much about him. Presumably French. Has directed a film called Assassins Club with Sam Neill.)

WritersLuc Besson – ( Known For: Léon: The Professional; The Fifth Element; Taken; Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets; Lucy; The Transporter; Transporter 2; Revolver; The Big Blue; Arthur, malédiction; Transporter 3; Nikita; Taxi; District B13; Bandidas; Point of No Return; Unleashed; American Renegades; Kiss of the Dragon; Enter the Warriors Gate; Future BMT: Anna; 3 Days to Kill; The Family; The Transporter Refueled; Colombiana; Taken 3; Taken 2; Lockout; The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc; Arthur and the Invisibles; From Paris with Love; BMT: Taxi; Brick Mansions; Notes: French. Probably most well known for Fifth Element among many other films that have managed to cross international borders. Kind of amazing this is only our second of his films.)

Bibi Naceri – ( Known For: District B13; The Code; BMT: Brick Mansions; Notes: He wrote the original. Really has no other credits in the US. Everything else is pretty much French productions across the board.)

Ryan Amon – ( BMT: Brick Mansions; Notes: Credited as Ruff Argonauts apparently? Mainly a composer, but I would guess he does uncredited rewrites on the side or something, which is kind of wild.)

ActorsPaul Walker – ( Known For: Furious 7; She’s All That; Fast Five; Furious 6; Joy Ride; Pleasantville; Varsity Blues; Flags of Our Fathers; Running Scared; Eight Below; Tammy and the T-Rex; The Lazarus Project; Hours; Pawn Shop Chronicles; Vehicle 19; Bobby Z; Noel; Monster in the Closet; Stories USA; Future BMT: Into the Blue; Brokedown Palace; Takers; Meet the Deedles; BMT: The Fast and the Furious; Fast & Furious; 2 Fast 2 Furious; Timeline; The Skulls; Brick Mansions; Notes: Sadly died in 2013, prior to this film being released. The song, “See You Again” was made as a tribute for the Furious 7 soundtrack.)

David Belle – ( Known For: Femme Fatale; District B13; Rogue City; District 13: Ultimatum; Divine Intervention; Super Express; Future BMT: The Family; BMT: Babylon A.D.; Brick Mansions; Notes: His father, to some degree, is credited with inventing Parkour. Really, Belle probably actually did, as his father apparently mostly forgot everything and only really “invented” it in that he used his skills to not get beat up in a Vietnamese orphanage as a child.)

RZA – ( Known For: Minions: The Rise of Gru; Nobody; American Gangster; The Dead Don’t Die; Clean; Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai; The Next Three Days; Mr. Right; Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping; Life in a Year; Funny People; The Man with the Iron Fists; A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas; Coffee and Cigarettes; Mutafukaz; The Protector 2; Hard Luck Love Song; Life Is Hot in Cracktown; Thriller; Gospel Hill; Future BMT: Scary Movie 3; Due Date; Derailed; BMT: G.I. Joe: Retaliation; Be Cool; Repo Men; Brick Mansions; Notes: Has been nominated for an Emmy for the soundtrack to Wu-Tang: An American Saga. He has also directed a few things, including the pretty well received The Man with the Iron Fists.)

Budget/Gross – $28,000,000 / Domestic: $20,396,829 (Worldwide: $71,416,730)

(Actually not too bad once you consider international money. The domestic haul is obviously much lower than they would have probably hoped though.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 26% (26/100): Choppily edited and largely bereft of plot, Brick Mansions wastes a likable cast on a pointless remake of the far more entertaining District B13.

(Yes, this is what I felt like at the time. I saw the original in 2006 (I think)? This coming out eight years later seemed odd since District B13 is good.)

Reviewer Highlight: Follows the bog-standard formula perfected by Besson: combining functional storylining with competent action highlights and an occasional air of whimsy. – Trevor Johnston, Time Out

Poster – BM2: Smooth Moves

(Wow… that is not good. Like supreme lameness. I would see that in a theater and be like “See you at BMT.” Color scheme is terrible and just too much going on. Interesting artistic choices but really that’s a mild positive in a sea of not good things. D.)

Tagline(s) – N/A

(There are some taglines on imdb but I don’t know where they come from. There isn’t one on the poster, so that’s an F. Give us something to work with.)

Keyword(s) – European Remake

Top 10: 12 Monkeys (1995), The Italian Job (2003), Insomnia (2002), Scent of a Woman (1992), Clash of the Titans (2010), Some Like It Hot (1959), Vanilla Sky (2001), True Lies (1994), Dawn of the Dead (2004), The Tourist (2010)

Future BMT: 54.5 Eye of the Beholder (1999), 54.0 Downhill (2020), 49.2 The Omen (2006), 44.8 Catch That Kid (2004), 43.1 Diabolique (1996), 43.0 Village of the Damned (1995), 41.8 I Think I Love My Wife (2007), 41.2 Clash of the Titans (2010), 41.2 Mixed Nuts (1994), 39.8 Intersection (1994)

BMT: The Wicker Man (2006), Taxi (2004), The Haunting (1999), Get Carter (2000), Jungle 2 Jungle (1997), Pathfinder (2007), Fathers’ Day (1997), Nine Months (1995), The Big Wedding (2013), Brick Mansions (2014), Sleepless (2017), The Blue Lagoon (1980), School for Scoundrels (2006), Blame It on Rio (1984), The Loft (2014), Vanilla Sky (2001), Wicker Park (2004)

Best Options (future): 44.4 Brick Mansions (2014), 8.9 The Thirteenth Floor (1999)

(Yup, this was basically the only option. If not for this I think we maybe could have managed the full French cycle (in that it needed to go elsewhere for that to work)? Although maybe not, it is possible we’d still be missing a Dimension transition at the top. Regardless, we’d effectively killed any possibility of another Merde de la Merde. There are plenty left, but in reality the genre specific options are clearly too thin.)

Welcome to Earf (HoE Number 15) – The shortest path through The Movie Database cast lists using only BMT films is: Paul Walker is No. 1 billed in Brick Mansions and No. 1 billed in 2 Fast 2 Furious, which also stars Eva Mendes (No. 3 billed) who is in Ghost Rider (No. 2 billed) which also stars Nicolas Cage (No. 1 billed) who is in The Wicker Man (No. 1 billed) which also stars Leelee Sobieski (No. 5 billed) who is in Here on Earth (No. 1 billed) => (1 + 1) + (3 + 2) + (1 + 1) + (5 + 1) = 15. If we were to watch Into the Blue we can get the HoE Number down to 12.

Notes – Paul Walker’s last fully completed performance (although his final film performance was in Fast & Furious 7 which he was filming at the time of his death).

This film is a remake of the French film “District B13” (Banlieu 13) which stars David Belle in the same role as in this movie. Additionally, plot & other action elements are used from Luc Besson’s treatment of B13: Ultimatum, the French follow up to the first film.

The Gate 38 location was also used in Death Race (2008) as a part of the race track.

Tremain AKA RZA tells Damian and Leno that “Cash rules everything around me.” Which is the title to a hit song by the Wu-Tang Clan which RZA was a member of.

The film takes place in 2018.

In the scene where they show the prison holding Lino, it is actually the Montreal Biosphere.

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