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DVD Review

DVD cover

The Prey


Starring: Albert Dupontel, Alice Taglioni and Stephane Debac
RRP: £17.99
Certificate: 15
Available 23 July 2012

Franck Adrien is biding his time in prison for a bank robbery which netted him 2 million euros, money he needed for his daughters operation. With only months to go until his release, he asks his cell mate, Maurel, who has been found innocent of rape, to call in and check his family. With a surprise visit from a police detective, Adrien discovers that his cell mate is not the innocent he supposed, but quite probably a serial killer. With his family in danger Adrien breaks out of jail...

The Prey (2011 - 1 hr, 40 min, 20 sec) is a French crime thriller directed by Eric Valette (State Affairs (2009)), the script is by Laurent Turner and Luc Bossi.

There is nothing terribly original in the script, though that is not to say that the film isn’t well executed. Whilst we all know from about fifteen minutes in where the story will take us: He will chase after the man who has his child, while the cop who is chasing him comes to understand that he is not just after the money, but on a more noble quest, yep it’s The Fugitive.

The presence of both Albert Dupontel (Franck Adrien) and Stéphane Debac (Jean-Louis Maurel) plus the relentless pacing makes the finished film an enjoyable experience, plus the film still has a couple of twists in the end that you won’t be expecting.

Franck Adrien is no innocent, nor would the character wish to be seen as anything other than what he is, but Albert Dupontel imbues him with humanity when his family is threatened. Obviously being fundamentally an action film, we have to suspend belief that a slightly older gentleman would be able to perform all the physically demanding actions required of his character without putting a hip out, but then that’s the magic of movies.

Stéphane Debac is creepy by not playing his character as such; he is calm, certain in his mission and the misunderstanding that society has with his desire to punish untrustworthy young women. He never goes off on a mad rant to try an persuade others of the true of his mission. Here is a centred man, sure in the knowledge that he is doing the right thing, except for him this involved raping and murdering young women.

In the end it is another intelligent thriller, well-acted and scripted, even if it does not contribute anything particularly new to the genre.

The print is clear and without fault. Audio comes in either French 2.0 of 5.1, both with English subtitles, the disc contains no extras.


Charles Packer

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