DIRECTED BY: Guillaume Pierret
STARRING: Alban Lenoir, Ramzy Bedia, Nicolas Duvauchelle, Stéfi Celma, Rod Paradot, Pascale Arbillot and Sébastien Lalanne
Lost Bullet follows Lino, a mechanical engineer known for his pimped-up ram cars, essential for any serious bank robber. During a jewelry store robbery with his brother Quentin goes wrong, Lino is caught by the police and in order to avoid spending time in a prison cell, he’s offered by officer Charas to help him pimp the special unit’s intercept vehicles to catch the thieves’ cars he used to build. Several months later, Charas hands Lino a letter granted him early release for his assistance with his unit, though it won’t come into effect for another week. Charas is looking for Lino to help him take down the latest bank robbery ring, leading to going to one location and Lino being framed for murder. With the police and the corrupt chasing him, Lino must find a way to prove his innocence and save Quentin from the mess that he’s caught up in.
Lost Bullet (also known as Balle Perdue) marks the directorial feature debut of Guillaume Pierret, whose has directed episodes to television series such as Le Golden Show as well as short film Matriarche. The premise of the film is simple, a thief and mechanical engineer Lino is caught by the police and in order to not spend time in a cell, he’s offered the opportunity to upgrade the police cars for a task force that chases after the thieves cars’ that he used to work on. When it looks like freedom is on the horizon for Lino, he’s framed for murder by a couple of corrupt police officers, leading to a cat and mouse chase between them as well as the rest of the police force as Lino looks to prove his innocence and regain his freedom.
In terms of action set pieces, this crime thriller does a good job with them, particularly in a sequence in which Lino attempts to break out from police custody and takes on the entire building. It’s messy, a few times inventive and it’s directed well by Guillaume Pierret. Another one that ones is the final act car chase, the film feels like it’s slowly building to that moment and from start to finish I did enjoy the hell out of that chase sequence, major props to the stunt team on this film. In terms of performances, I thought Alban Lenoir done well in the lead role, particularly on a physicality level as you absolutely feel him putting his body through the ringer in certain sequences, Nicolas Duvauchelle was compelling as the smug corrupt villain Areski, and Ramzy Bedia and Stéfi Celma were good with their performances as Charas and Julia.
While the action set pieces are handled well, the film is pretty much following the cliché route of films similar to it in this genre and the motivations of the villains are pretty much non-existent other than, they’re corrupt and we need a villain for Lino to go up against. While the runtime does clock in at just over an hour and thirty minutes, you do feel the film stalling once Lino escapes from custody to the final act, and the female characters of Julia and Moss (Stéfi Celma and Pascale Arbillot) are pretty much underwritten as well.
Lost Bullet is a decent crime thriller that doesn’t outstay its welcome as its just over ninety minutes long, with some good action set pieces and performances by Alban Lenoir and Nicolas Duvauchelle, but unfortunately it doesn’t have much depth to it to make it stand out from similar films in the genre.