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The Battle of Algiers

Street Date:
August 9th, 2011
Movie Release Year:
1965
MPAA Rating:
Unrated
Studio:
Criterion
Length:
121 Minutes
Release Country
United States
This disc has not yet been reviewed. The following information has been provided by the distributor.

Genres:

War, History, Drama

Director:

Gillo Pontecorvo

Plot Synopsis:

One of the most influential political films in history, The Battle of Algiers, by Gillo Pontecorvo (Kapò), vividly re-creates a key year in the tumultuous Algerian struggle for independence from the occupying French in the 1950s. As violence escalates on both sides, children shoot soldiers at point-blank range, women plant bombs in cafés, and French soldiers resort to torture to break the will of the insurgents. Shot on the streets of Algiers in documentary style, the film is a case study in modern warfare, with its terrorist attacks and the brutal techniques used to combat them. Pontecorvo’s tour de force has astonishing relevance today.

Technical Specs

  • 2 BD-50 Blu-ray Discs

Video Resolution/Codec

  • 1080p/AVC MPEG-4

Aspect Ratio(s)

  • 1.85:1

Audio Formats

  • French PCM Mono
  • Arabic PCM Mono

Subtitles/Captions

  • English

Supplements

  • Gillo Pontecorvo: The Dictatorship of Truth, a documentary narrated by literary critic Edward Said
  • Theatrical and rerelease trailers
  • Production gallery
  • A booklet featuring an essay by film scholar Peter Matthews, excerpts from Algeria's National Liberation Front leader Saadi Yacef's original account of his arrest, excerpts from the film's screenplay, a reprinted interview with cowriter Franco Solinas, and biographical sketches of key figures in the French-Algerian War
  • Marxist Poetry: The Making of "The Battle of Algiers," a documentary featuring interviews with Pontecorvo, Gatti, composer Ennio Morricone, and others
  • Interviews with Spike Lee, Mira Nair, Julian Schnabel, Steven Soderbergh, and Oliver Stone on the film's influence, style, and importance
  • Remembering History, a documentary reconstructing the Algerian experience of the battle for independence
  • "États d'armes," a documentary excerpt featuring senior French military officers recalling the use of torture and execution to combat the Algerian rebellion
  • "The Battle of Algiers": A Case Study, a video piece featuring U.S. counterterrorism experts
  • Gillo Pontecorvo's Return to Algiers, a documentary in which the filmmaker revisits the country after three decades of independence