The Battle of Algiers

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Released 1966

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Movie Summary

Director:
Gillo Pontecorvo
Released:
1966
Rating:
Not Available
The Battle of Algiers is the 1966 Oscar nominated Italian masterpiece that is one of the premiere films of its type and a history making production that critics oft refer to as a staple of cinema. The film describes the first beginnings of the FLN (Front of National Liberation) in 1954, how it grows from a small group of people to an organized movement and eventually wins the Algerian people to their side. The escalation of violence on both sides - the FLN organizing terrorist attacks in restaurants, airport, on the streets, that leave many casualties and the French police and army replying with bombings, torture and trigger-happy shootings on the streets. After each French repression, shock, singing, shouting and cries for freedom arise from the Arab quarters. Women, children, peddlers, merchants, people old and new, are behind the FLN fighters and do everything they can to help in the war against the French. Viewers follow the film through some characters on the Algerian and French side. There's no demonizing of either side. They even come to understand Coronel Mathieu, commander of the French paratroopers, and his views.moreless

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Metacritic Score

  • 100

    Los Angeles Times Kenneth Turan

    Achieves its success through a combination of attitude and technique, uniting, to exceptional effect, a way of viewing the world morally while looking at it physically.

  • 91

    Entertainment Weekly Owen Gleiberman

    Nearly four decades ago, Pontecorvo anatomized the very form of modern terrorist warfare: the hidden cells, the cultish leaders, the brutish cycle of attack and counterattack.

  • 80

    Variety

    It's a dedicated effort with importance as a 'document.' (Review of original release)

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Categories

Drama

Themes

Classics, Politics, Foreign Language