Lost Bullet – Netflix film review

★★★★

Directed by #GuillaumePierret

Written by #GuillaumePierret, #AlbanLenoir, #KamelGuemra

Starring #AlbanLenoir, #NicolasDuvauchelle, #StefiCelma

Film Review by Amber Jackson

Mechanic Lino (Alban Lenoir) is passionate about making and using ram cars, but when he is confronted by dirty cops, he is forced to push his passion to the limits to avoid a lengthy prison sentence. Amongst the violence and noise, Guillaume Pierret’s latest film exposes a more human side to the action genre with its Blockbuster style containing actual substance. Its French language creates a little more intrigue and certain other qualities make the film stand out more than others of its genre.

For one thing, this film is fairly succinct, packing copious amounts of drama and suspense into a modest ninety minutes. The script is easy to follow, even with subtitles (reader, please watch in its original French) and has an unexpected plot that keeps the audience guessing. All contribute to Lino’s feeling of not knowing who to trust. Pierret has sharply directed this film so that performance is the main focus of the story and this is brought out through the acting. Each character was multi-dimensional with both their individual storylines and their existence around protagonist Lino. It would have been nice to see a bit more background to the women in the film such as Julia (Stefi Celma), but she was still very well included within the story and her actions towards the end of the film added a fresh twist to the story.

Sounds creates an intense atmosphere throughout the film, with the music always building as though danger is constantly looming. Indeed, Lino is always on edge, which is always exaggerated even through his breathing. As the film crescendos, the car chases get louder and faster. There are lots of car chases and crashes to consider when watching and this added layer of action within the story is well edited together with the special effects of explosions and debris. Unlike a typical American action film, each fight sequence had meaning and was well-worked into the story. There was purpose in every punch, particularly from Lino as he tries to escape injustice, and the stunt work was great – although a little fake in parts. What is important to note is that there was creativity in the violence featured, which added to the story behind the action even more.

The camerawork builds on this mood so that the film is even more intense. Fast action shots contrast well with the slower, shakier scenes which makes it feel more raw. A particular style that was really effective were takes that were filmed through a window, or reflection, which worked well to expose certain characters’ vulnerability more. Another great note about the look of the film is that the use of colour was very vibrant throughout. Red blood and orange fire combined with dark smoke creates a brutal atmosphere. Each scene was also awash with different levels of light and shadow to really make a distinction between the more ominous scenes.

It is refreshing to see a different type of action film, especially on Netflix. Guillaume Pierret and Alban Lenoir have created a film that adds another dynamic to the genre, with an unpredictable plot and excellent dialogue. It will be great to see how well Lost Bullet continues to be received by audiences.

#AmberJackson