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This frisky if long-winded and derivative French policier never gets off the starting-blocks despite some charismatic performances and intriguingly executed set-pieces. It’s Lyon in the late 1970s, and cop François (Guillaume Canet) welcomes home his reformed jailbird brother Gabriel (François Cluzet). When attempts by ‘Gabi’ to snag a job lead to degradation, he switches back to the trade he knows.

Director Jacques Maillot traces the brothers’ different fortunes, as the film sadly tramps a path to nowhere unusual. There’s potential to draw conflict and moral ambiguity from the plot, but attempts to realise it disappear at the hands of saggy editing, signposted emotional cues and uninteresting side players. The essential film’s banality is reflected in a colour palette of beiges, greys and browns.

Release details

Rated: 15
Release date: Friday December 5 2008
Duration: 106 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Jacques Maillot
Cast: Guillaume Canet
François Cluzet
Marie Denarnaud
Clotilde Hesme
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