OUTSIDE THE LAW is a gripping drama-
a historical sequel to director Rachid Bouchareb's DAYS OF GLORY. It shows another
part of the Algerian struggle for independence from France (in France)
while THE BATTLE FOR ALGIERS showed it in Algeria. OUTSIDE THE LAW tells this story through the destiny of three brothers- Messaoud goes off to fight
the French war with Vietnam, Abdelkader goes to a French prison (for being a protester for Algerian independence, and Said
goes to France with their mother where all of them will be reunited). Said,
one of the brothers, ends up in the world of organized crime of Pigalle in Paris
and starts training a boxer for boxing matches. The other two brothers end up
in the FLN aka the National Liberation Front (with Abdelkader becoming the leader) who use terrorism in their efforts to get
independence for Algeria.
Colonel Faivre, national security police, wants to stop the FLN.
OUTSIDE THE LAW balances history and drama
flawlessly. Lots of background detail while focusing on the story of the
three brothers and the movie even manages to bring in Faivre as part of the story while tying it into the fates of the three
brothers. Rachid Bouchareb
has created another classic historical drama. If he follows with another movie
about Algeria, I want a movie on the Satif Massacre. Rachid has managed to bring forth details about parts of history not frequently
heard about like the involvement of Algerian soldiers in World War II in DAYS OF GLORY and the FLN's acts of terrorism (or
revolution) in France (where more people probably be more aware of the Algerian Independence movement chronicled in the classic
film THE BATTLE FOR ALGIERS. His films inform while also entertain at the same
LANGUAGE TRACKS AND SUBTITLES:
Skip the English dub track and watch the
film in the original French with English subtitles. The dubbed track seems
to have the same actors who do a lot of English dubbed tracks and miss out on trying to match the emotion of the performers
(and getting the right voice actors for the dub). Sometimes the subtitles
do jump ahead by a couple to a few seconds ahead of the French track on rare occasions while the subs lag behind sometimes
in the deleted scenes.
28 minutes of deleted scenes show
more scenes with the brothers and their immediate family, Said's covert involvement with the FLN, and Said's conflict with
the Corsicans. Most scenes were cut for pacing and it is true that editing
a film is the final rewrite of the story. The
Making of featurtte is an interesting piece on the making of a film and not the usual dry behind-the-scenes featurettes that
populate some French movie DVDs. It includes interviews with cast and the director
in addition to a tour of the sets for the film.
The director interview is the most interesting
as he says OUTSIDE THE LAW is like a historical sequel to his previous film, the wonderful World war II drama INDIGENES aka
DAYS OF GLORY. He says the Setif Massacre in Algeria
could create it's own film (even though it lasts only 7 to 8 minutes in OUTSIDE THE LAW).
He recounts his parents and other family members were part of the FLN.
The cast interviews are with the actors who play the three brothers. Their
interviews are as fascinating as the director's interview.
Also included on the disc are the original
theatrical trailer and teaser along with previews for other upcoming titles from Tartan.
FINAL ANALYSIS: OUTSIDE THE LAW is another film that shows that Rachid Bouchareb can combine history with drama. OUTSIDE THE LAW entertains as it also informs. It is
a nice piece of history that you can see together or apart from his previous film, DAYS OF GLORY. The disc also has a a nice assortment of extras.
this DVD review is (c)8-22-2011 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission. send all comments to firstname.lastname@example.org