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Outside The Law (Hors La Loi) [DVD]

3.7 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Jamel Debbouze, Roschdy Zem, Sami Bouajila
  • Directors: Rachid Bouchareb
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: French
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Optimum Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 29 Aug. 2011
  • Run Time: 138 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00525QJAI
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 71,813 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Director Rachid Bouchareb (Days of Glory) brings another Oscar®-nominated film, Outside The Law, a thrilling post-World War II story of three brothers who become separated after losing their family home in Algeria. 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.

Special Features:
• Making Of
• Interview with Rachid Bouchareb

Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
Outside the Law is a historical crime family drama strongly reminiscent in tone and visuals to The Godfather and the "young Vito" passages of Godfather II, as well as the guerrilla activism of "Michael Colins" . The film starts with the eviction of a farming family from their land in Algeria in the 20s. The titles roll over newsreel reports of the Victory in Europe celebrations in Paris on May 8, 1945 then cuts to the French security forces' massacre at Sétif of around 6,000 Algerians on the same day. The film pulls no punches in its portrayal of French injustice and brutality, or the ruthlessness - and cruelty - of the Algerian nationalists.

The acting (Jamel Debbouze, Roschdy Zem, Sami Bouajila, all familiar from the same director's film Days of Glory), pace of action, storytelling and period atmosphere all make this tremendous film one that only those allergic to subtitles will not enjoy.
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I don't write lengthy reviews, only about likes and dislikes. Short and sweet, worked with many Algerians at Orly airport in the 90s. I had a great friendship with those folks, BUT, I never really understood what happened to them as a nation, I do now. so fair play to the makers of this movie, you have educated me a lot, thank you.
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This is another offering from French film maker Rachid Bochareb and it is the sequel to the acclaimed `Days of Glory' and indeed stars the same actors. Most notably is Jamel Debbouze as `Said as the youngest brother in the family'. The first part dealt with the African colonial forces that helped France rid herself of Nazi occupation. This takes it a stage further to when those same soldiers fight against France for the self determination of Algeria.

The film is predominantly in French with a fair smattering of Arabic and some pretty good sub titles. It starts in 1925 with the family being thrown off their ancestral land by the French and then takes us on a tour of the many low points for France heading toward the painful birth of Algeria. We even have the massive defeat of the French by the Vietnamese at Dien Bien Phu thrown in. This is not a war movie, even though there is plenty of action, and I have to say it gets the thumbs up for attention to period detail. There are depictions of the massacres that took place in both Algeria and Paris too and the only punches pulled are those in the boxing ring that Said sets up as one of his nefarious money making deals.

It deals with the inter political rivalry of the FLN and the MNA, the two leading and conflicting Algerian parties are shown in their brutal reality. It has a noir feel about it in places and shows the crushing poverty that drives people to do extraordinary things. It is well acted, well directed and beautifully shot. It has been criticised for being anti French, but it is really anti colonial and some might see this as a post revisionist guilt trip, but I think it is a slice of awkward history from Frances' recent past.
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Illuminating story of Algerian battle for independence, but by immigrants in France rather than in Algeria, so a good companion to the film 'The Battle For Algiers'. A good film but not quite getting the best entertainment out of the complicated subject matter. The directors previous film 'Days of Glory' scores better there, whilst also covering some of the same Algerian issues but during WWII.
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By Bob Salter TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 28 Jan. 2012
Format: DVD
When I watched Rachid Bouchareb's "Days of Glory" I thought it was an unusual and highly effective war film about North Africans fighting for the French cause in the Second World War. But so far as war films go, although it was good, it was not great. I believe this film is another step up the ladder. Bouchareb is not a political film maker like Gillo Pontecorvo who made the most famous film about the Algerian war "Battle for Algiers", his influence is more from across the wide Atlantic. In "Days of Glory" Bouchareb certainly borrowed from "Saving Pivate Ryan" in the films closing scene, and in this one he is again certainly influenced by Hollywood. His characters bear a close resemblence to the close knit Corleone's from the Godfather films. Bouchareb himself refers to Sergio Leone's "Once Upon a Time in America", although one might argue this was more Italian in origin than American. There are also darker shades of Jean Pierre Melville's "Army of Shadows" about the French resistence. Having just watched Paul Verhoeven's excellent "Soldier of Orange" about the Dutch resistence I was under no illusions as to the nature and risks of an undercover war. As the old adage goes 'one mans terrorist is another mans freedom fighter'.

Using the same actors from his last film Bouchareb starts them off in Algeria where they are forcibly evicted from their land by the French colonisers. The three brothers end up in a shanty town in France for Algerian immigrant workers. It is there that two of them actively fight for the cause of the Algerian National Liberation Front. This involves rapidly escalating levels of violence. Opposition and opponents are ruthlessly dealt with, which leads to friction between the brothers and the constant threat of capture and torture by the police.
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