Just ahead of its upcoming premiere at Fantasia in Montreal, Xavier Gens’ Mayhem! is on deck to release in 2024 from IFC Films. The film stars Nassim Lyes along with Olivier Gourmet, Loryn Nounay, Vithaya Pansringarm and Sahajak Boonthanakit, from a script by Magali Rossitto, Guillaume Lemans and Gens.
Here are the programming notes via the fest’s Matthew Kiernan:
Sam (Nassim Lyes) is a man without freedom. With a few months left on his prison sentence, the amateur boxer enters a work furlough program that allows him to taste the freedom to come. But that freedom proves elusive and a tragic event forces Sam to flee to Thailand, where years later he believes he’s found it with a loving wife (Loryn Nounay) and daughter. They hope to build a new life on a beachfront property, but ruthless local gangster Narong (Olivier Gourmet) stands in their way. In order to obtain their liberty, Sam must do a favour for Narong, but when it goes south, Narong attacks Sam’s family, forcing Sam to fight for his life, his family and, once again, his freedom. Fighting, however, is what Sam truly knows and does best and mercy be to anyone who gets in the way.
MAYHEM! (released overseas as FARANG) marks the welcome return of Xavier Gens to Fantasia, and for those who only know his horror films like FRONTIER(S), this action-packed revenge thriller may prove a surprise. But to those of us who remember HITMAN or his episodes of GANGS OF LONDON, this is the Xavier Gens we’ve been waiting for. Brutal and often unrelentingly violent, MAYHEM! is hardcore, kick-ass action in every way. It’s as though this movie was made specifically to blow the roof off Fantasia, and by the time the incredible climax arrives, you are all going to lose your shit. Gens shoots the action as lean and mean as possible with incredible fight choreography, and has found a commanding new action star in Lyes, a former MMA fighter who handles the film’s emotions as well as he does the intense action. MAYHEM! has everything Fantasia audiences want — action, violence, strong heroes — and it has them in spades. You’re gonna love this one.
Mayhem! also marks a reunion for Gens and stunt coordinator Jude Poyer following their previous work on British crime drama series, Gangs Of London. Vincent Roget (Same Player) and Dimitri Stephanides (WTFilms) produced the film which shot in France and in Thailand, and was previously released by Studiocanal in France as Farang back in June.
“Xavier Gens has crafted an energetic and propulsive film, showcasing some of the most impressive fight choreography we have ever seen,” said Scott Shooman, head of AMC Networks’ Film Group.
“While winking at films like ‘The Raid’ and ‘Taken,’ Xavier has made a film which stands on its own as an iconic new member of the hand-to-hand action canon. We are thrilled to be working with the immensely talented team to bring this riveting story to theaters,” he added.
Read more at Variety.
Lead photo: Thanaporn Arkmanon
Native New Yorker. Lover of all things pizza, chocolate, pets, and good friends. Karaoke hero. Left of center. Survivor. Fond supporter of cult, obscure and independent cinema - especially fond of Asian movies and global action cinema. Author of the bi-weekly Hit List. Founder and editor of Film Combat Syndicate. Still, very much, only human.