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Dial H-I-S-T-O-R-Y (1997)

Not Rated | | Documentary | 1997 (Belgium)
An experimental documentary detailing the history of plane hijackings.


Johan Grimonprez


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Buckle up for dial H-I-S-T-O-R-Y, the acclaimed hijacking documentary that eerily foreshadowed 9-11. We meet the romantic skyjackers who fought their revolutions and won airtime on the passenger planes of the 1960's. By the 1990s, such characters apparently are no more, replaced on our TV screens by stories of state-sponsored suitcase bombs. Director Johan Grimonprez investigates the politics behind this change, at the same time unwrapping our own complicity in the urge for ultimate disaster. Playing on Don DeLillo's riff in the novel MAO II: 'what terrorists gain, novelists lose' and 'home is a failed idea', he blends archive hijackings with surreal and banal themes including fast food, pet statistics, disco and his quirky home movies. David Shea wrote the superb soundtrack to this roller coaster through history, best described in the words of one hijacked Pepsi executive as: "running the gamut of many emotions: from surprise to shock, to fear, to joy, to laughter and then again, ... Written by Zapomatik

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Not Rated



Belgium | France



Release Date:

1997 (Belgium) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Centre Georges Pompidou See more »
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User Reviews

surreal, disturbing and darkly comic
21 March 2004 | by djdelonSee all my reviews

Just an odd, odd flick, a montage of images and sound bites from international hostage and terrorist attacks, mainly from the 60's through the early 80's...there's some point being made about the medias coverage of such acts of terror turning us all into apolitical carnage-seeking voyeurs...but it's all pretty scattershot as far as a coherent message, but it has a dark humor in it's presentation of these harrowing events, ending with a string of slo-mo footage of airliners crashing, all to the strains of that 70's disco anthem, The Hustle...after the end credits are done, the last shot says all there is to say about this film makers wicked (or, sick) sense of humor.

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