The camera lovingly traces the crowded markets of Paris, as a very attractive young woman appears, wearing no clothes. Unsurprisingly all eyes are on her, and we watch a pickpocket (Richard Madden) taking advantage of the distraction. Then he steals a bag which holds a deadly secret. CCTV cameras connect him and the bag, and soon he is targeted as a terrorist by the CIA, and in particular Sean Briar (Idris Elba), who soon realises that both of them are in the deadly sights of a major conspiracy.
Paris becomes one of the characters in the plot, with edge of the seat action chase sequences across the rooftops of Montmartre, and extraordinary car chases through the narrow alleys and streets of the city.
Such is the realism that it is hardly surprising that the release of the film was delayed out of respect for the trauma following recent Paris terror attacks.
No-one goes asleep while this film is showing.
If I had one complaint it is about the ending – which disappointed me. But then again, the director was providing the unexpected throughout. Why should the ending be different?
This is right up there in its genre, as a topical thriller in a terrorised and corrupt world.