Detroit Film Theatre


Saturday, June 25, 2011

4:00 PM

(Italy/1966—directed by Gillo Pontecorvo)

This groundbreaking and still-controversial work (it was recently screened at the Pentagon as part of a program called “how to win a battle against terrorism and lose the war of ideas”), Gillo Pontecorvo’s The Battle of Algiers is a fierce and riveting recreation of the Algerian rebellion against occupying French troops in the 1950s. Its brilliantly orchestrated scenes of urban warfare, sabotage and mayhem are prevented from becoming abstract by the screenplay’s focus on individual stories as they play out within this maelstrom. One of the most influential films of the modern era, The Battle of Algiers marches forward with awesome cinematic skill, abetted by gritty, documentary-like cinematography and Ennio Morricone’s gripping score. Best Picture Award, 1966 Venice Film Festival; Oscar nominations for Best Foreign Film and Best Screenplay. In French and Arabic with English subtitles. (121 min.)

“Brilliant and unforgettable... mesmerizing pace and immediacy.” –Michael Wilmington, Chicago Tribune