France / 1995 / French with Spanish subtitles / 98
Vincent Cassel, Hubert Koundé, Saïd Taghmaoui
Abdel is a Muslim teenager that is in a coma after receiving a brutal beating at the hands of the police. His condition has provoked a wave of violence in the streets. This could have happened yesterday in any given part of the world, but in fact it took place in the nineties in a Paris suburb that is the setting for this emblematic film that earned Mathieu Kassovitz the Best Director award in Cannes in 1995. Shot in black and white, the film narrates a day in the life of a triad of friends: the Jewish Vinz (Vincent Cassel), the Muslim Said, and the French African Hubert. Their conversations, their conflicts with the police, the stigma, and the spiral of violence from which they cannot emerge drive the film. The day is dominated by Vinz and his obsessive thought: if his friend Abdel dies, he will balance the scales by killing a policeman. Suspense grabs the viewer’s attention until the heady fall at the end. Ultimately though, it is not the fall but the landing that counts.
CONTACT & PRESS KIT
Director, screenwriter, producer, and actor. After Métisse (1993), he directed La Haine (1995) which won three César awards and the Best Director honor at Cannes. His face is unforgettable to international audiences for his role as Nino in the film Amelie.