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Parkour—an activity with the aim of moving from one point to another as efficiently and quickly as possible, using principally the abilities of the human body—has appeared in various television advertisements, news reports and entertainment pieces, sometimes combined with other forms of acrobatics like free running, street stunts and tricking. Such acrobatics are not part of parkour.[1]

FilmsEdit

  • After including parkour moves in a chase sequence in the film Taxi 2 (2000), in 2001 French producer Luc Besson produced a feature film, Yamakasi—Les samouraï des temps modernes (Yamakasi—the modern-day Samurai), featuring members of the original Yamakasi group. The film tells the (fictional) tale of a group of young friends who use their parkour skills to evade capture, while stealing money to fund the healthcare of a child that was injured copying their parkour training. In 2004, Besson wrote Banlieue 13, another feature film involving parkour, starring David Belle and Cyril Raffaelli; English-dubbed and -subtitled versions were released in 2006 as District B-13 in North America, and the UK.[2][3] Later, members of Yamakasi group filmed for France 2 channel a documentary called Génération Yamakasi - Vol au dessus des cités.
  • The 2006 James Bond film Casino Royale features Sébastien Foucan in a chase taking place early in the movie that implements many aspects of parkour, specifically Foucan's related discipline of freerunning. The mainstream success of Casino Royale served to bring parkour to the attention of a wider audience and was emblematic of that movie's attempt to unite the superheroics of the James Bond franchise with a "real world" aesthetic. Casino Royale's release sparked a renewed media interest in parkour and related disciplines and a large amount of recent mainstream parkour coverage dates to around Casino Royale's release.[4] Along with The Bourne Ultimatum, Casino Royale is credited with starting a new wave of parkour-inspired stunts in Western film and television.[5]
  • The werewolves in the movie Blood and Chocolate used (in their human form) what appeared to be parkour as a demonstration of their superhuman agility.[6][7]
  • In the movie "Cop Out" (2010), Dave (played by Seann William Scott) is a robber practicing Parkour, or so says Paul Hodges (played by Tracy Morgan). His partner (played by Bruce Willis), stunned by this display of knowledge, replies "What are you, Wikipedia ?".

LiteratureEdit

  • Issue 6 of the limited series Global Frequency, written by noted comic book author Warren Ellis, tells the story of a young traceuse named Sita Patel who is tasked with the seemingly impossible mission of crossing London in under twenty minutes to defuse a biological weapon. The issue, titled The Run, is a varied and detailed (and mostly believable) treatment of the topic and remains one of the most memorable issues of the comic's publication. The series was published by Wildstorm Comics.[9] In 2004, Global Frequency was nominated for an Eisner Award.[10] This depiction in a critically acclaimed series by a high-profile speculative fiction writer helped give parkour a fashionable, exotic, and mysterious image among a young, educated and trend-conscious demographic.

TelevisionEdit

  • Cops and Robbers includes Parkour sequences.[11]
  • In the twelfth episode of the first season of The Forgotten (TV series) titled "My John", the Forgotten Network explore the world of parkour while attempting to identify a young man who fell to his death from the roof of an office building.

Video gamesEdit


  • Crackdown is a 2007 videogame released for the Xbox 360 which has been claimed to feature parkour elements. The elements in question are high running speeds, a superhuman ability to jump vertically and horizontally (in some cases clearing entire buildings) and an emphasis on gripping and vaulting from ledges and protruding objects. These elements are designed to make players feel fully in control of their own movement, and by extension fully in control of their environment (the city in which the game takes place), and are noteworthy within a wider movement in game design to achieve these goals.[17]
  • Tony Hawk's American Wasteland: the character that the player controls can use several parkour techniques whilst not on the skateboard. In the game parkour is erroneously referred to as free running. It is possible to wall-run, wire-grab and execute other parkour movements.[18]
  • Mirror's Edge is a 2008 videogame notable for having its core gameplay consist of parkour techniques such as wall-running, vaulting, break-falls and kick-and-spin jumps. Rather than using movement as a means to travel between goals, Mirror's Edge made movement itself the goal, and allowed players to overcome armed opponents by outrunning and outmaneuvering them rather than engaging them with violence. The game was innovative for presenting this movement-focused gameplay from a first-person perspective, depicting the main character's arms or feet coming into the player's field of view in a way that in earlier first-person games like Doom and Half-Life was used to depict guns or tools, and thereby using the game's interface to coach players to use their avatar's body and athleticism to solve problems rather than weapons or objects.[19]
  • In Grand Theft Auto IV, the main character, Niko Belic, performs some parkour movements, like Lazy Vault to jump over a fence or the parkour roll while jumping over great hights.

ReferencesEdit

  1. David Belle and/or PAWA Team. "English welcome - Parkour Worldwide Association". Archived from the original on 2005-05-08. http://web.archive.org/web/20050508021450/www.pawa.fr/Welcome/welcome.html. Retrieved 2007-05-12. "Understand that this art has been created by few soldiers in Vietnam to escape or reach: and this is the spirit I'd like parkour to keep. You have to make the difference between what is useful and what is not in emergency situations. Then you'll know what is parkour and what is not. So if you do acrobatics things on the street with no other goal than showing off, please don't say it's parkour. Acrobatics existed long time ago before parkour." 
  2. 2.0 2.1 Sandra Barrera (January 2, 2007). "Parkour: Leaps of faith". Los Angeles Daily News. http://www.dailynews.com/entertainment/ci_4937806. Retrieved 2007-12-11. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 Yuba Bessaoud and Alex Delmar-Morgan (July 9, 2006). "Focus: Look Mum, watch this!". The Times. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2087-2262412,00.html. Retrieved 2008-01-03. 
  4. Alec Wilkinson (April 16, 2007). "No Obstacles". The New Yorker. http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2007/04/16/070416fa_fact_wilkinson?currentPage=all. Retrieved 2007-10-14. 
  5. Georg Szalai (August 28, 2009). "Fremantle Pacts to Bring Parkour to TV Screens". Reuters. http://www.reuters.com/article/televisionNews/idUSTRE57R0OZ20090828. Retrieved 2009-09-23. 
  6. http://www.portlandmercury.com/portland/Content?oid=112384&category=22133
  7. http://www.laweekly.com/2007-01-25/film-tv/film-reviews/
  8. Janet Kornblum (December 3, 2007). "'Look, Ma, no hands' — or feet". USA Today. http://www.usatoday.com/life/lifestyle/2007-12-03-parkour_N.htm. Retrieved 2007-12-07. 
  9. Warren Ellis, Global Frequency Issue #6, Wildstorm Comics
  10. Hahn Library, 2004 Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards
  11. "Xbox Europe Plays Cops and Robbers". teamxbox.com. September 25, 2006. http://news.teamxbox.com/xbox/11829/Xbox-Europe-Plays-Cops-and-Robbers/. Retrieved 2007-12-13. 
  12. Liz Hayes (September 16, 2007). "Go Jump". 60 Minutes. http://sixtyminutes.ninemsn.com.au/article.aspx?id=295676. Retrieved 2008-01-03. 
  13. "Parkour Opener From "House" Season 6 Episode 6". http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O6wUViwqquY. 
  14. "Assassin's Creed (Xbox 360)". November 28, 2007. http://www.gamesxtreme.net/x360/game/assassins-creed/review.shtml. Retrieved 2007-12-11. "Its a good start, an excellent free-roaming adventure with some of the best use of parkour yet." 
  15. Ryan Pearson. "Review: 'Assassin's Creed' Not Quite Perfect". Fox News Channel. http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,311973,00.html. "Leave it to the French to bring us the first parkour video game" 
  16. Andrew P., "Review of Assassin's Creed," Electronic Gaming Monthly 224 (January 2008): 89. In Andrew P.'s review, he writes that the game features "a challenging parkour path of escape..."
  17. Cam Shea (January 10, 2007). "10 Reasons to Play Crackdown". http://xbox360.ign.com/articles/754/754563p1.html. Retrieved 2008-01-03. "It's part super hero (think Hulk or Neo), part Jumping Flash and part Parkour." 
  18. Steven Williamson (February 8, 2006). "Tony Hawk's American Wasteland - Xbox 360". http://www.hexus.net/content/item.php?item=4583&vpr=yes. Retrieved 2008-01-03. "Later on in story mode, you’ll even get the chance to learn some parkour skills!" 
  19. Doug Elfman (November 28, 2008). "Mirror's Edge puts grace of parkour at fingertips". http://www.timesunion.com/AspStories/story.asp?storyID=744129&category=ARTS. Retrieved 2009-09-23. 

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