Idris Elba definitely possesses the screen presence, charisma and acting abilities to become a standout action hero, but for inexplicable reasons, his ventures into the genre have been overwhelmingly disappointing. The Losers and Takers both bombed at the box office a decade ago, and since then he’s gone on to star in a number of mediocre titles.
As well as being given very little to do as the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Heimdall, the 48 year-old has lent support in the tedious Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance and The Gunman, headlined infamous dud The Dark Tower, buried himself under prosthetics as Star Trek Beyond‘s one-note villain and seen his archetypal bad guy get blown off the screen by the combined star power of Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham in Hobbs & Shaw.
With the notable exception of Pacific Rim‘s memorable monologue where he canceled the apocalypse, Elba has so far failed to make his mark in the realm of the action movie, and one of his more forgotten starring roles has just landed on Netflix. Bastille Day (also known as The Take) is about as formulaic as these films get, with the story following a CIA agent forced to team up with a pickpocket arrested for a crime he didn’t commit as they race to stop a terrorist plot.
Elba co-stars alongside Game of Thrones‘ Richard Madden in the low budget effort, which did manage to turn a profit after earning almost $15 million at the box office with production costs of just $4 million. The Paris-set actioner comes off as a pale imitation of Luc Besson’s Eurocentric shoot em’ ups, which is hardly glowing praise, but that being said, Elba is never anything less than watchable and Bastille Day might yet be the latest mediocre movie to find a second life after debuting on the world’s most popular streaming service.