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Outside the Law (2010)
"Hors la loi" (original title)

6.6
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 2,604 users   Metascore: 59/100
Reviews: 17 user | 78 critic | 14 from Metacritic.com

A drama about the Algerian struggle for independence from France after WWII.

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Saïd
...
Messaoud
...
Abdelkader
Chafia Boudraa ...
La mère
...
Faivre
...
Hélène
...
Ali
Thibault de Montalembert ...
Morvan
...
Otmani
Jean-Pierre Lorit ...
Picot
Ahmed Benaissa ...
Le père
Larbi Zekkal ...
Le caïd
Louisa Nehar ...
Zohra
Mourad Khen ...
Sanjak
Mohamed Djouhari ...
L'entraîneur (as Mohamed Djouhri)
Edit

Storyline

After losing their family home in Algeria, three brothers and their mother are scattered across the globe. Messaoud joins the French army fighting in Indochina; Abdelkader becomes a leader of the Algerian independence movement in France and Saïd moves to Paris to make his fortune in the shady clubs and boxing halls of Pigalle. Gradually, their interconnecting destinies reunite them in the French capital, where freedom is a battle to be fought and won. Written by Silenzio

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Three brothers. One destiny. Freedom at all costs.

Genres:

Crime | Drama | War

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Language:

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Release Date:

22 September 2010 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Outside the Law  »

Box Office

Budget:

€20,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Algeria's official submission to the 2011's Oscar as Best Foreign Language Film. See more »

Goofs

The French air force plane in 1953 in Indochina seems to be a today's Hercule C130, instead of a Noratlas that was used then. See more »

Connections

Featured in The 83rd Annual Academy Awards (2011) See more »

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User Reviews

 
It's a start, but not a very good one
30 March 2011 | by (Berlin, Germany) – See all my reviews

Viewed at the Festival du Film, Cannes 2010

There's no doubt France's colonial history is a treasure trove for film makers, and the country certainly has some coming to terms to do with its past, but Outside The Law, for all the fuss it raised in Cannes (including a protest by former white residents of Algeria), is, sadly, a missed opportunity.

True, the film does try to cover all the bases, and the French treated the Algerians appallingly, both in Algeria and in France itself. But what comes out is a very anodyne and clichéd soap opera about three brothers who eventually end up taking criminal paths, either within the Algerian terrorist movement or the underworld.

Although great care has been taken with the costumes, sets, props etc. to create a very credible sense of period, Outside The Law is let down by its script which, in striving for balance and neutrality, robs the films of any drama or tension and purses a by-the-numbers narrative. Everything is signposted in advance and duly arrives on time.

Outside The Law is to be applauded as a start in tackling this incredibly complex and still painful subject, but it's not a very good one. The protesters, who most likely had not seen the film, would find nothing to fear here. And they too also have a story that should be told. Whether other film makers pick up the gauntlet remains to be seen, but I suspect box office results for this film will show that this is a market best served by TV documentaries instead.


12 of 21 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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