The film follows three young men and their time spent in the French suburban "ghetto," over a span of twenty-four hours. Vinz, a Jew, Saïd, an Arab, and Hubert, a black boxer, have grown up in these French suburbs where high levels of diversity coupled with the racist and oppressive police force have raised tensions to a critical breaking point. During the riots that took place a night before, a police officer lost his handgun in the ensuing madness, only to leave it for Vinz to find. Now, with a newfound means to gain the respect he deserves, Vinz vows to kill a cop if his friend Abdel dies in the hospital, due the beating he received while in police custody. Written by
The trip across Paris is strange : the three characters should arrive at the Saint-Lazare station(north-west of Paris), coming from ChanteloupLesVignes. Yet, when they arrive, they are in front of the Montparnasse station(south of Paris), on the Rennes street. Then, they go to Asterix place, on the boulevard Pierre Ier of Serbia, close to Iena Place (west of Paris), and when they try to catch the last train, this time they are at the Saint-Lazare station, the right one to go back. But then, when they are on the roof, they see the Eiffel Tower and the Trocadero from the south-east, being probably close to Montparnasse station. Then, they come across a sculpture, L'Ecoute, in the Halles Garden(center of Paris), before going back. Hence, their trip goes : south, west, north-west, south and center of Paris. See more »
Sniff of coke?
Uh, no, no.
[psychotically, to the others; starts rapidly practicing with nunchaku]
A little coke? A little line of coke? Nobody for coke? That's it for coke? How's your brother, how's he doin?
[still practicing with nunchaku]
Mean fuckin bastard. Still a maniac?
Well shit, look! VWA-VWA-VWA-VWA!
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great movie about social problems and how they're being dealt with
When the riots broke out last autumn in Paris..the first thing I thought about was this movie. I put on the TV and all the scenes reminded me off the best movie ever made in Europe, and the best on the subject...La Haine The first time I saw the movie in 2003, we was gonna watch it for school. At first I thought it was gonna be another french movie about a young french girl that got pregnant(we watched a lot of those in French lessons)...but what followed was probably the most defining 90 minutes in my life.
When the movie started with the images of riots (real riots, old news footage) combined with Bob Marley's "Burning and Looting" I was getting fascinated about this movie, this had to be good. A lot of things were very recognizable, everyone knows a "Said", everyone knows a "Hubert" and at the time I was feeling like "Vinz". All the scenes influenced me and were very recognizable, the hanging around with friends, the way of talking, the arguments they used for their deeds...everything. The end shocked me and I couldn't really think anything else then "I got to watch this movie again", and the day after I bought a DVD of it.
The movie tells the story of a black, Arab and Jewish guy who live in a housing project near Paris, the kind of neighborhood where most of the people don't have a job, where the youth bores itself and flirts with criminal behavior, where drugs are being sold and where an occasional riot starts (this happened from the 80's until recently from time to time). The movie follows them 24 hours after their friend Adbel got beat up by the police during the riots, where a cop lost his gun. Vinz (the Jewish guy) found the gun and swears that when Abdel dies he's gonna take vengeance by killing a police. With Vinz - not being the most stable nor the most smart and relaxed person - having a gun on him the three come in some hard situations, but also without the police gun they have enough problems during the 24 hours....I ain't gonna spoil anything, but this should be enough to make you wanting to watch this movie.
After watching it a couple of times I realized that this was a story, I always thought it was a documentary, which is a big compliment to the whole crew I think. But still that didn't made the movie less strong, the greatest thing about it is that it isn't easy made, no clichés...when you watch an American movie on the subject there always is some form of exit for the main character or he dies in a way that makes you think he deserves it. So either way a character is portrayed as a nice guy or a total bad guy, who both have girl who want to get them out of troubles. This is where La Haine sets itself apart from other movies, it doesn't try to portray the characters as nice people, although you do feel sympathies for them. The best thing is the end, which sets the movie mostly apart and makes it more recognizable for the European crowd (I'm not gonna spoil it, but if it ended differently the movie wouldn't been so great) The way it is shot in black and white makes it look realer, makes it grimier, it portrays the banlieues as a place without an exit. That's what maybe sets the movie also apart, the black and white makes it look arty and grimy at the same time. Maybe the best is that it still doesn't look dated because of that.
Another great thing is the soundtrack, all the songs that are used in the movie have a great effect on the images and visa versa. Bob Marley perfectly fits the riots, Isaac Hayes fits the hashish packing and smoking scenes, Zapp and Roger fits the break dance song perfectly and the Expression Direct fits the haunted car scene in inner city Paris perfect (if you can understand the lyrics). But what really sets this movie apart is the Cutkiller scene, this scene only made me wanted to get a set of SL1200's...
The way the tension is build in the movie is great, most of the time the characters don't do anything, but you still feel the tension building, the hate growing, and when you maybe bored watching some scenes the first time (the "candit-camera" scene for instance and the "eiffeltower" scene), but afterwards they're like pieces of a puzzle falling into it's place. Some shots are brilliantly, the Taxi Driver imitation of Vinz at the beginning (when you already see that Vinz is losing it), the police interview shot with Said and Hubert, the discussion at the toilets, the way the characters are introduced, the subway shot...it's all eye candy.
To make a conclusion, if you love hip hop and don't think the police as necessarily the representation of the good in society. of course when you love cinema it is also a good movie, but it really is a movie which has it own public: the youth. If your Dutch try to get hold of the 7 euro Freerecord shop version, but I can recommend the English 10 year anniversary more...the directors commentary, trailers and bonus material make this a really nice DVD. But I can understand why a lot of people don't like it, it doesn't offer solutions, it doesn't give an opinion on anything except the police, and of course you have to have a certain frame of mind to like the movie.
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