Battle Of Algiers, The: The Criterion Collection

Criterion   (1966) / Region A
Battle Of Algiers, The: The Criterion Collection

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Battle Of Algiers, The: The Criterion Collection

One of the most influential films in the history of political cinema, Gillo Pontecorvo's The Battle of Algiers focuses on the harrowing events of 1957, a key year in Algeria's struggle for independence from France. Shot in the streets of Algiers in documentary style, the film vividly recreates the tumultuous Algerian uprising against the occupying French in the 1950s. As violence escalates on both sides, the French prisoners for information and the Algerians resort to terrorism in their quest for independence. Children shoot soldiers at point-blank range, women plant bombs in cafés. The French win the battle, but ultimately lose the war as the Algerian people demonstrate that they will no longer be suppressed. Pontecorvo's tour de has astonishing relevance today.


  • Length
  • Rating NR
  • Released:
  • Added May 17 2011
  • Production Year 1966
  • Empire SKU 1575297
  • UPC Code 715515085113
  • Studio  Criterion
  • Packaging Custom
  • Number of Discs 2
  • Disc SS-DL
  • Subtitles English


Disc 1: The Battle Of Algiers
Gillo Pontecorvo: The Dictatorship Of Truth, a documentary narrated by literary critic Edward Said
Marxist Poetry: The Making Of The Battle Of Algiers, a documentary featuring interviews with Pontecorvo, director of photography Marcello Gatti, and composer Ennio Morricone, among others
Interviews with Spike Lee, Mira Nair, Julian Schnabel, Steven Soderberg, and Oliver Stone on the film's influence, style, and importance
Production gallery
Theatrical and rerelease trailers

Disc Two: History And The Film
Remembering History, a documentary on the Algerian experience of the battle for independence
Etats D'Armes, a documentary excerpt featuring senior French military officers recalling the use of and execution to combat the Algerian rebellion
The Battle Of Algiers: A Case Study, a video piece featuring U.S. counterterrorism experts
Gillo Pontecorvo's Return To Algiers, a documentary in which the filmmaker revisits the country after three decades of independence

Booklet featuring an essay by film scholar Peter Matthews, excerpts from Algeria's National Liberation Front leader Saadi Yacef's original account of his arrest, excerpts from the film's screenplay, a reprinted interview with cowriter Franco Solinas, and biographical sketches of key figures in the French-Algerian War by political science scholar Arun Kapil


  • Audio
    Arabic Dolby Digital Mono
    French Dolby Digital Mono
  • Video
    Widescreen 1.85:1 B&W



  • Yacef Saadi
  • Antonio Musu

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