6.4/10
2,572
13 user 15 critic

Secrets of State (2008)

Secret défense (original title)
In France, terrorist groups and intelligence agencies battle in a merciless war everyday, in the name of radically opposed ideologies. Yet, terrorist and secret agents lead almost the same ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(participation) (as Nathalie Carter), (idea) | 1 more credit »
Reviews

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

State Affairs (2009)
Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A plane explodes above the Gulf of Guinea. An escort girl is murdered in a Parisian park. Thousands of miles separate these two events, and yet Nora Chahyd, believes there's a connection ... See full summary »

Director: Eric Valette
Stars: Rachida Brakni, André Dussollier, Thierry Frémont
Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

The two brothers Julien (Nicolas Duvauchelle) and Louis (Steve Le Roi) work on their father's steel barge, which he won't let them inherit. To keep the boat, they resort to stealing a ... See full summary »

Director: Manuel Pradal
Stars: Vahina Giocante, Nicolas Duvauchelle, Steve Le Roi
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

The Malakian clan, a family of ruthless gangsters, controls the underworld of Southern France. At its head, the violent godfather Milo Malakian rules his world with an iron fist. His son ... See full summary »

Director: Laurent Tuel
Stars: Jean Reno, Gaspard Ulliel, Vahina Giocante
A Gang Story (2011)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

After growing up in a poor gypsy camp, Edmond Vidal, aka Momon, has retained a sense of family, unfailing loyalty and pride in his origins. Most of all, he has remained friends with Serge ... See full summary »

Director: Olivier Marchal
Stars: Gérard Lanvin, Tchéky Karyo, Daniel Duval
The Prey (2011)
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Bank-robber Franck Adrien is serving a prison sentence after robbing a national bank. Before he was caught he managed to hide the money but now it's not just the police who are looking for ... See full summary »

Director: Eric Valette
Stars: Albert Dupontel, Alice Taglioni, Stéphane Debac
Lila Says (2004)
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Two inner-city teenagers engage in an obsessive, innocent flirtation fueled by Lila's sexually explicit overtures.

Director: Ziad Doueiri
Stars: Vahina Giocante, Moa Khouas, Karim Ben Haddou
Alive (2002)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

After a brutal attack, a 19-year-old girl falls into a self-destructive cycle.

Director: Sandrine Ray
Stars: Vahina Giocante, Samuel Jouy, François Berléand
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Sylvie, a 30-year-old scientist, has to dig deeper and deeper into her own background.

Director: Jacques Rivette
Stars: Sandrine Bonnaire, Jerzy Radziwilowicz, Grégoire Colin
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A washed-up Marseilles cop (Auteuil) earns a chance at redemption by protecting a woman from the man who killed her parents as he is about to be released from prison.

Director: Olivier Marchal
Stars: Daniel Auteuil, Olivia Bonamy, Catherine Marchal
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A random montage of disturbing images tell a story about one summer in the lives of two teenagers who somehow find love within each other, Orso and Marie. After they realize this, they run ... See full summary »

Director: Manuel Pradal
Stars: Vahina Giocante, Frédéric Malgras, Nicolas Welbers
99 francs (2007)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The life of Octave Parango, a flamboyant ad designer, filled with success, satire, misery and love.

Director: Jan Kounen
Stars: Jean Dujardin, Jocelyn Quivrin, Patrick Mille
Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

A Parisian criminal gang fall apart after challenges to the gang's leader lessen his influence.

Director: Frédéric Schoendoerffer
Stars: Benoît Magimel, Philippe Caubère, Béatrice Dalle
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Alex
...
Diane / Lisa
...
Pierre
...
Ahmed
Rachida Brakni ...
Leïla / Chadia
...
Al Barad
...
Jérémy
Katia Lewkowicz ...
Aline
Kamel Belghazi ...
Aziz
Djemel Barek ...
Khaled
Carim Messalti ...
Hajj
Hassam Ghancy ...
Danar
Nicolas Marié ...
Fouche
...
Salem
...
Slim
Edit

Storyline

In France, terrorist groups and intelligence agencies battle in a merciless war everyday, in the name of radically opposed ideologies. Yet, terrorist and secret agents lead almost the same lives. Condemned to secrecy, these masters of manipulation follow the same methods. Alex and Al Barad are two of them. The former is the head of the D.G.S.E.'s (Direction Générale de la Sécurité Extérieure, the French equivalent of the CIA or the MI6) counter-terrorism unit while the latter reigns over a terrorist network, and both fight using the most ruthless of weapons: human beings. Secret Défense (aka Secrets Of State) tells of their secret war through the destinies of Diane, a student recruited by the French secret service, and Pierre, a troubled young man who thinks terrorism will bring him salvation. Trained and indoctrinated for missions which are beyond them, they are both drawn into a chain of events from which they seem incapable of escaping. While they both be sacrificed in the name of ... Written by Happy_Evil_Dude

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Thriller

Certificate:

See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

10 December 2008 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Secret Defense  »

Box Office

Budget:

€11,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Nicolas Duvauchelle's first scene was his character's rape in the prison showers. See more »

Goofs

DGSE headquarters are shown in La Défense (west of Paris) whereas the real headquarters of the DGSE is in the eastern part of Paris See more »

Connections

Featured in En bonne intelligence (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Space Weaver
Performed by Lisa Gerrard
Composed by Lisa Gerrard and 'Michael Edwards (XIX)'
Published by Sony ATV Music Publishing Australia
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Tense French Anti-Terrorism Thriller
9 July 2009 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

It makes a difference to see it from the French point of view. After all, ten percent of the population of France are now refugees or descendants of refugees from Muslim North Africa. This film is about the French Secret Service, which has initials I can never remember, but you know the one. It portrays them as hyper-efficient, hyper-modern, ruthless and dedicated professionals who will, as Gérard Lanvin the lead actor puts it in the film, be 'patriots' who will 'do anything for my country'. And 'anything' really means, unfortunately, 'anything'. The film portrays in grim, horrifying, and fascinating detail the fantastic entrapments devised to recruit young agents in the fight against Muslim terrorism. The French call the Qaeda fanatics by their alternative name of 'Salafis' rather than 'Wahabbis'. The terrorists are portrayed in 'Damascus' and 'Afghanistan' (both actually filmed in Morocco) with extreme and convincing realism. The film is disturbing in many places, with one homosexual rape scene and several murders. I believe the horrifying footage of the dog in the glass cage who is killed by cyanide gas is a real Qaeda video. The set-ups carried out by the French secret service are so devious that they would make Machiavelli blush. The film does not have the Hollywood approach to violence, which always focuses on childish and adolescent fantasies of things crashing and exploding. Instead, the French, who are a far more sophisticated people, concentrate on what happens to people rather than the havoc wreaked to mere objects. In this, they are more straightforward. If a severed head has to be delivered in a cake box, it is delivered in a mundane ordinary manner, and it does not have to be delivered by a helicopter smashing into a skyscraper. Anyway, there are few skyscrapers in Paris, thank God. (Skyscrapers have no business existing anywhere other than New York and Shanghai.) The attitude towards the agent ('humint' to the Americans) is brazenly unfeeling. As Lanvin says: 'An agent is not a person, he is a tool.' Controllers are not allowed to treat their agents as human beings. The film features an astonishingly versatile performance by the young actress Vahina Giocante, who is tricked into becoming an agent, and who screams at Lanvin when she realizes what he has done to her that he is 'all alone'. He answers with resignation: 'Yes, I know.' The whole story is very bleak, that is, when it stops its restless pace of action long enough to allow anyone a moment to reflect. The film is really a most impressive achievement, exciting, well made, relentlessly entertaining, if you have the stomach for the grisly bits. The director, Philippe Haïm, who also wrote the story, appears from his name to be of North African descent, so perhaps he has a special feel for all of this. He has done a superb job of making a French 'blockbuster'


17 of 34 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Question about Pierre/Aziz? chaiks
Mehdi Nebbou C-Skull
how did they make the dog convulse? west182
Discuss Secrets of State (2008) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?