Paris used to be such a tranquil location in Hollywood films.

Predominantly employed as a backdrop to some PDA couple’s romantic tryst, it was practically shorthand for schmaltz.

Now however, be it aging action star Liam Neeson or Kevin Costner, we can’t go ten minutes without some ex-CIA agent gone rogue rampaging around the city of Love, speeding down cobbled streets in an economical hatchback and beating a suspect to death with a stale baguette. Not that we’re complaining, you understand.

Well now it’s the turn of Idris Elba: playing a grizzled US intelligence bruiser tasked with foiling a terrorist bomb plot, Bastille Day sees our man reluctantly forced to team up with Richard Madden’s wise-cracking con-man mistakenly caught up in events.

A breakneck thriller – with the emphasis on breaking necks – if anything rivals the action, it’s the one-liners shared between the bickering lead pair. Thankfully though, as ShortList sat down with Madden and Elba to talk about the film, it’s clear these are two men fully at ease in one another’s company, sharing quite the chemistry off screen as well.

Frankly, if there was any more banter we’d have been getting a table at Nando’s.

Oh and we also found time to quiz Elba on rumours surrounding a certain secret agent with the initials JB…

Interviews From 2016

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