Several years ago there was great French martial arts action film called (at least in the US) District B-13 which was a hybrid of Escape from New York fused with crazy parkour action. Parkour being less about fighting but being to traverse seemingly any terrain under ones own power. Often while running away from someone chasing you - though in these films it's commonly mixed into a pretty unique style of fighting. It's also crazy fun to watch on screen. So I was pretty jazzed to see the sequel which is finally making its way onto US screens.
I don't completely remember the plot of the original District-13. Something about unrest in the Paris suburbs causing the French government to wall them off from the rest of the city. Of course colorful gangs took over - as they are prone to do in the movies. Some sort of issue causes local good guy Leito to team with police officer Damien to climb walls, jump through stuff and generally kick ass. At the end the government promises to ease the conditions in the district. The new film starts 3 years later and of course that hasn't happened. Instead a new series of challenges threatens the district. Mainly an involved conspiracy involving the head of the national head of the secret police (or something like that) and a big real estate developer. Yes, with the bursting of the housing bubble real estate developers are the new middle eastern terrorists as go-to cinematic bad guys. And they're equally sympathetic.
Speaking of Travolta, when I walked out I couldn't help but compare it to the other semi-comic actioner I just saw set in the city of lights - From Paris With Love. Both have plots that strain one's ability to suspend disbelief - but D13 Ultimatum delivers the goods - where I just thought From Paris With Love was mostly groan worthy. Then I got home and noticed on IMDB that Luc Besson had been involved in writing both. Maybe the dialog here is equally embarrassing (though there's probably less of it), or maybe it just sounds better in French. But I suspect it's just that if you actually build a little excitement one can forgive almost anything. So all said - lots of fun - glad I went. That is all.