Detroit Film Theatre


Thursday, January 10, 2008

7:30 PM Detroit Film Theatre

  • Film
  • Fees Apply

(France/2007) Directed by Barbet Schroeder

Equally at home with narrative films (Reversal of Fortune) and non-fiction (Idi Amin Dada), director Barbet Schroeder has here tackled one of the most elusive and unnerving subjects of his remarkable career. In the 1950s, Jacques Vergès was a hero of the anti-colonialist left, defending Algerian revolutionaries and bringing to light the French military’s widespread use of torture. But before very long Vergès morphed into the lawyer we love to hate, defending some of the most despised figures of our time, including Carlos “the Jackal,” Holocaust denier Roger Garaudy, dictator Slobodan Milosevic, and the infamous Nazi butcher Klaus Barbie. In this startling new documentary, Schroeder interviews Vergès extensively and also speaks with several of his former clients, many of whom have never before agreed to such candid on-camera sessions. The result is a haunting, deeply ambiguous portrait of one individual whose words and actions force us all to confront our own “politically correct” notions of the true meaning of  “justice for all.” Toronto and Telluride Film Festivals. In English and French with English subtitles. (135 min.) Thur. at 7:30; Fri. and Sat. at 9:30

“A brilliant study in the link between moral corruption and narcissism.” –David Edelstein, New York Magazine