The Battle Of Algiers Movie Analysis Film Studies Essay

The film is set as a contemplation of the battle in the North African state to derive independency. The movie is set in Algiers, the capital of Algeria, a Gallic settlement. The twelvemonth is 1957, and the Algerian war is at its extremum as the insurrectionists, the FLN battle against the Gallic paratroopers, an elect squad of ruthless soldiers. The movie is a word picture of the Battle for Algiers, a section of the Algerian war that charted the class for freedom. The film starts with a scene where Gallic paratroopers have merely used anguish to pull out information from an old adult male. They now know where the last of the leaders of the freedom combatants, Ali Pointe is concealing and the Gallic commanding officer gives him thirty seconds to give up.

A big part of the film is shot as the flashbacks of Ali Pointe, a at bay leader of the insurgence. The flashbacks show him, three old ages earlier, as a goon with a corrupt yesteryear of larceny and drug-dealing. He joins the activists to assist free Algeria of frailty and jobs associated with the Gallic. Through the flashbacks, the film follows the insurrectionists battles and the Gallic authorities s finding to stop the war… It so traces the metabolism of the insurgence into a national revolution. For the larger portion of the 117 proceedingss the film runs, it sees the war through Ali Pointe s eyes as it traces his battles as a leader of the insurgence.

The flashbacks terminal and the timeline returns to the present. Ali Pointe and all other captured FLN leaders are guillotined. The FLN retaliate and it becomes a national revolution as the insurgence grows in Numberss and support. The film so adapts a general focal point and ends as Algeria attains independency in 1962.

The subject

The issues addressed by this film are varied and cosmopolitan. The force evident in the film is disgusting, but it must be taken for its thematic content. It centers on terrorist act as a method of war employed where conventional agencies are non applicable. It besides tries to picture the issues brought approximately by imperialism and colonisation and the eternal battle of people to accomplish their independency at whatever cost.

It besides shows that terrorist act is non a method simply used by insurrectionists but besides by conventional armed forcess when it suits them. The Gallic armed forces is depicted as utilizing unconventional methods such as anguish and use. While the pitilessness of the insurrectionists is expected, the counter insurgence is a shocker. It is non expected that any trained armed forces would utilize such methods, but this films chief subject Centre on uncloaking them.


The film adapts a quasi-documentary attack during the flashback scenes. Te viewer learns of how the war turned viral as it spread. It uses Ali Pointe s position as a starting point for the narrative, the flow of information is detailed and impossible for a 30 2nd flashback, but it is enlightening. The ocular manner used in this movie was converting with the initial recording being done in black and white due to the infant nature of colour engineering at the clip.

The last section of the film that has general focal point on the narrative of the Algerian war adapts the omnipresent unseeable storyteller method. The passage is unflawed and singular, and it enhances the overall consequence of the narrative.

Rising action

The flashbacks in the narrative mean that the film has lifting action for merely the first section. The flow from the anguish scene, to Ali Pointe s flashbacks marks the foundation of the action. It is centered on Ali s memories, the composure and deficiency of any force as he reminisces of his former life and the sufferings of his pressing life. The bloody, grey film scenes besides add to the action of the film. The flashback attack, nevertheless, give the narrative really small rise in action because it is a war film.


It is impossible to center on any portion of the Battle of Algiers as the lone flood tide in the film. It is riddled with multiple tense and explosive scenes, all centered on the flashbacks. This movie provides a deeper penetration and apprehension of the kineticss of struggles ; this is done in the manner it provides a elaborate arm race between the warring cabals that usually accompany struggles. In short the thought of reciprocality in struggle which describes how each side attempts to go around and outmanoeuvre the other aid us enormously understand the kineticss of the existent universe struggles ( Rainer, 10 ) .

A memorable scene is where several female NLF take their head coverings and frock like Europeans in order to perforate the enemy district to works bombs. Another scene shows business communities loosen uping in a saloon, people waiting for a coach, adolescents holding merriment and a kid who basking her ice pick and all of a sudden, a bomb explodes. Another bombardment occurs in a java house at around the Casbah country. The scenes of the Gallic Legion s anguish cells, the deliberations of the Algerian opposition organisation ( National Liberation Front ) top brass in the Casbah meeting room, their conflict hardened and unafraid soldiers on the rooftops, coffeehouse, checkpoints as they detonate bombs, are all a merchandise of a breathtaking casting

Falling Action

The 2nd portion of the film signifies the start of falling action. The escalation of the insurgence into a full graduated table revolution indicates that while the Gallic might hold won the conflict for the metropolis of Algiers they lost the Algerian war. In a manner, this compensates for the bloody action scenes as one is compelled to chew over on whether such gores and decease was necessary to derive independency.

Although fortunes forced the locals were to get down the war, the book is speedy to demo that they did non back up terrorist act as those who engage in it in the movie have their calculation minutes ( Ebert 123 ) .They did non approve the methods employed by the activists, but they were portion and package of the additions. This is a true indicant of a group that is formed with echt grounds of liberating their society from some of the things that kept them exploited for centuries. Merely when 1 would hold thought that the war is over, bombs go forthing 100s of people dead and others injured.


The manufacturer, Pontecorvo used particular shooting techniques that gave the film slightly of a documentary-like farinaceous expression. The films secret plan besides follows the documental attack.In the scenes after Ali Pointe and other leaders are killed, it is clear that the Gallic have shot themselves in the leg. Their actions against the insurrectionists have solidified the people s resolutenesss and they have no pick but to allow them freedom

The terminal

The twelvemonth is 1962 and Algeria is in a euphoric province. The scenes displacement from felicity to the licking of the Gallic. The film ends on a positive high, as the deceases of all those killed in the class of the war seem worthwhile. The deceasing scenes of the film show the triumph on the faces of the Algerian people.

The characters

The dramatis personae included merely one professional histrion, Jean Martin. The film engages composite characters. The character Colonel Mathieu is a composite character meant to demo the top leading of the existent Gallic regiments in Algeria at the clip. It besides seems likely that the manufacturer and the histrion attempted to demo the colonel as an honest adult male simply making his occupation, as opposed to a scoundrel and passionless leader of a pitiless military. Jean Martin plays the character good, but it still ends up picturing him as a scoundrel.

Other characters are existent but have their names changed to suit in the narrative. The mostly unprofessional dramatis personae was picked because of their visual aspect and look. They therefore fit in with their function in the movie, giving it the feel of a existent clip entering.


Battle of Algiers was released in 1966, 4 old ages after the terminal of the Algerian war. It is a film that rebuilds the events that were witnessed in Algeria in 1954-1962. Its content clearly brings out the indifferent narrative in the war. It is non propaganda as it shows the elaborate occurrences of the war without demoing an evident prejudice. It is a political film that concentrates on the war facets of the Algerian War for independency and has indiscriminate word picture of the happenings.

One of the most noteworthy things from the beginning is the deficiency of prejudice ; the film shows the atrociousnesss committed by both sides despite the fact that its budget was partially footed by the Algerian authorities. The events in the film are a true contemplation of the War of independency in Algeria. It besides shows how the insurgence crept into the Algerian society. The people rose in rebelliousness of colonialism and finally defeated the Gallic. It represents a clip when a moving ridge of patriotism was distributing through Africa ( Augends, 121 ) .

One can non assist holding to remind himself or herself that each and every frame of this frame has been staged ( Solinas, et Al, 124 ) . The scenes of a bombardment of civilian non merely in coffeehouse but besides in the dance halls and hit and run blackwashs of constabulary officers from the Gallic side, provides the few who witnessed the ghastly experience or those who have read the descriptive narration of the opposition motion with a feeling of sorrow at the experiences. It creates a kind of nostalgic disgust, but it is indifferent because both sides are depicted for holding committed atrociousnesss.

The superior book is farther demonstrated by the fact that the several military organisations that are involved in one manner or the other with terrorist organisations runing like National Liberation Front ( NLF ) have found this movie a get downing point in their military scheme. It has been used as they plan how to face and get the better of such organisations while maintaining the casualties at a lower limit. For case, Pentagon has been testing it to its staff headed for terrorist hot musca volitanss like Iraq and Afghanistan. The purpose is to demo them the two sides of the war and what will go on if they do non take attention of the indigens. ( Solinas, et Al, 154 ) .

The flow of events in the movie besides adds to its delicacy, which improves the grade of world in it enormously. One of import thing about this is that it lays the background of why the ( National Resistance Front ) NLF had to take up weaponries against the Gallic forces. This is usually the of import portion of any work of art, to accomplish its primary purpose. If this film had no achieved this, there would be no converting ground why they are contending in the first topographic point and it would do the film pitiably hollow and inexpert. This farther reinforces the fact that the movie is barren of any propagandist material despite the fact that it was subsidized by the Algerian authorities. It was tailored to guard and esteem the existent occurrences of the Battle of Algiers and to state the existent narrative of the war.

The pick of the characters in the movie is another characteristic that farther set it apart from a bulk of the movies in the same genre. The function of Ali la Pointe, played by Brahim Haggiag, is one such pick that fits into the portion he is supposed to play. His prole-hero characteristics are so concentrating that no 1 can challenge that he was the existent FNL existent leader. By portraying Ali as a down trodden Muslim in desperate demand of release from the Gallic business, the managers of the movie once more fit the dramatis personae with state of affairss ( Gilbert, 10 ) . Ali is non merely the perfect incarnation of the downtrodden Muslim clamour for emancipation but besides a representation of the ordinary Algerian. His eyes are the ardent centre of this film as the vivid flashbacks explicate his narrative.

Merely like the bulk of films of this genre, there are a figure of lessons that one can larn from movie. The first such lesson is the sum to reciprocality in this struggle ( Zuhur, 231 ) . Reciprocality means both sides to the struggle are responsible to the struggle. That each side attacks or defends in revenge to the other side connoting in the absence of either of the two there would be no struggle. The same applies to the likes of trade and so many other enterprises in life that requires two to tango ( Burr, 10 ) . This reciprocality is usually what identifies one party to the difference as a scoundrel or attacker and the other a victim. For case, it is alluring to see the Algerians as victims while the Gallic forces as the attackers. This is a unsound decision ; if anything the French who annexed Algeria in 1800 and it is merely a century and a half later that the radical war Begins.

However, as is made clear by the movie, the French besides have their just portion of victimization and retaliation, chiefly brought about by the demand for resources that would enable them to chase away insurgences of that nature non merely in Algeria but in all settlements that were in the Gallic domain of influence. It is obvious that the Algerian would non hold taken up weaponries had the Gallic agreed to run into their legitimate demands. Given that the Gallic policy of assimilation had made the Algerians 2nd category Gallic citizens. As ascertained, struggles are mutual in that any of the viing side has an option of stoping the struggle by keeping itself from any revenge. This means that resignation is barely of all time considered an option. However, in most of the instances at that place would ne’er be a side that would be wiling to make such a thing, until of class, the state of affairs demands it or they are defeated in war. That is the ground why both sides are to fault itself for any unwanted effects of the struggle that they were portion of.

The 2nd lesson which this movie teaches us and which is besides related to reciprocality in struggle that we have talked of is the significance of normative analysis ( Burr, 10 ) . The movie consecutive illustrates the successful decisive events of this struggle between the Algerian insurgence and the Gallic forces in the 1950s, without looking to side with any of the supporters. This impersonal and degage attack is exactly the ground that explains why the movie is so powerful, thought provoking and reliable. This makes anybody touching that the movie is a propaganda tool appear utterly ignorant of the glowering description to the contrary. The same can be viewed as the ground why the movie is so enriching and compelling. The ocular presentation of of import events in the battle for independency and particularly the full colonial regulation is so impersonal that it can easy go through for a docudrama. The hard-boiled Gallic soldiers in the first scene ruthlessly tormenting an Algerian insurrectionist together with the Algerian kids and adult females who we are shown seting bombs in military checkpoint shows that both sides engaged in inhumane, immoral, and illegal behaviours ( Rainer, 10 ) . They are both ready to prosecute whatever agencies necessary to run into their several terminals, which is the ground there are no heroes in this movie ( Pujol, 3 ) . In short, what the writer wishes to pass on is puting the exposure of all the human calamities that happen amongst us but people do non look to pay a batch of attending on them ( Ebert, 67 ) . The film reveals the worlds of the atrociousnesss of the war between the ground forces of the Gallic and the soldiers of the National Liberation Front. However, it may superficially look justified for the FLN insurrectionists to utilize such methods to contend against the Gallic regulation ; their battles and methods are rough and inhumane. They have caused agony by killing and maiming people in cold blood as a consequence of the bombs they works aiming the Europeans. The onslaughts by the FLN were reciprocated by the Gallic military in a much more unreliable manner due to superior preparation and arms ( Evans & A ; Morgan, 234 ) . This ferociousness has affected all those involved. These people live in fright of being ganged down and this explains why they were ne’er at peace ( Ebert 87 ) . The development of this film was brilliant and so it led to the realisation of the end that the manufacturers intended. The film was developed so many old ages ago but till today it remains relevant. This is because it shows the effects of any war on the indigens and what both sides lose when they go to war. The movie is declarative of a thorough stage dancing and glorious book. These are certain indicants that there was thorough input by the helping crew to populate up to the original book.


In drumhead, at every phase of this struggle we get a clear illustration of how the two sides of the struggle change their tactics in a command to acquire an upper manus in the struggle ; we besides see a slow but unstoppable escalation of contending into war. The Battle of Algeria is a good and indifferent description of the radical conflict opposing the insurrectionists against the Gallic forces ; a war that escalates until one party emerges the master. It tries to convey out the agony of the people, the wanton devastation of belongings and life. This is of import and can be applied to about all competitory state of affairss that can be modeled in a war with an enemy with better arms and preparation.

The shapers of the narrative created a fictional book that captures the existent narrative. The indifferent attack might hold been refuted later by some parties to the war but the existent narrative is at that place for all to see. It is besides up to the spectator to make up one’s mind whether such bloodshed was truly necessary in the battle for independency. It is a singular lesson in history and the unfairnesss in war. At the terminal of the film, it is left to the scruples of the spectator to make up one’s mind which side he or she feels was justified to contend with such unconventional methods. This inquiry is left unreciprocated because the film shows such a singular balance in the word picture that it is about impossible to pick sides with justified grounds. It besides shows how the Gallic lost the conflict of Algerian capitals but finally lost the Algerian War. Algeria gained independency in 1962, the same twelvemonth the Algerian war ended.