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The Battle of Algiers - Movie Review Example

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The film focuses on Ali la Pointe, one of the leaders of the National Liberation Front (FLN) whose guerilla campaign against the French finally culminated in independence in 1962. The film…
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The Battle of Algiers
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Download file to see previous pages What impressed me most about the film is the way it shows the story from both the French and the FLN points of view. It shows unspeakable acts of violence and brutality committed by both sides, not portraying any bias towards any side. For example, in the early parts of the film, an FLN supporter is beheaded in prison. Furthermore, Ali la Pointe later kills the brothel owner who helped to bring him up because he refused to declare loyalty for the FLN. Therefore, the film tells both sides of the story despite the fact that only one side of the previous warring factions, the post-colonial Algerian government, was involved in its production. It demonstrates a high degree of impartiality and accuracy of historical events.
Another brilliant aspect of The Battle of Algiers is its excellent examination of guerilla warfare tactics and strategies. For instance, early on in the film, the FLN takes advantage of the tendency by French soldiers at checkpoints not to search pretty women. They use women dressed in western attire to smuggle weapons in and out of the Casbah. Another impressive guerilla tactic portrayed by the film is the strategy used by the FLN to maintain secrecy of its membership and operations. Each recruited cell leader recruits two people. Thus, he only knows the identities of the person who recruited him and the two others he recruited, and no one else in the movement. Consequently, if captured by French forces, an FLN member cannot reveal much since he knows the identities of only three people in the entire movement.
The film also sheds light on the political philosophy underlying national liberation, particularly from an Arab perspective. As a result, it enabled me to understand the motivation behind the Arab spring revolutions that recently took place in several Arab countries in North Africa and the Middle East. For instance, late on in the film Pointe asks the FLN leader why they are resorting to general strikes instead of continuing with ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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