24 Days

Dull Days

24 DAYS Alexandre Arcady, France). 110 minutes. Subtitled. Thursday (May 1), 8:30 pm, Varsity Sunday (May 3), 9 pm, Canada Square 2. Rating: NN

This year’s opener is a slick policier based on the 2006 case of Ilan Halimi, a young Parisian abducted in Paris by an international gang specializing in ransoming Jewish victims. Director Alexandre Arcady, who also co-wrote and co-produced, is less interested in the specifics of the case (and the vile motivations of Ilan’s kidnappers) than in packaging the story as a pulse-pounding thriller.

The script is based on a book written by Ilan’s mother, Ruth Halimi, which might explain why Ilan ceases to exist as a character once he’s taken. But it doesn’t justify 24 Days’ odd indifference to its own themes, or its failure to allow its talented leads (Zabou Breitman and Pascal ElbĂ© as Ilan’s parents, and Jacques Gamblin and Sylvie Testud as the police specialists to whom they turn) to do more than look worried or shout at one another.

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