Jamel Debbouze

Jamel Debbouze

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360 Review


Good
Loosely based on Arthur Schnitzler's play La Ronde, this beautifully assembled film is easy to watch. But that's the problem: the subject matter should be much more difficult than this, as it's about having the courage to make unexpected choices.

In Vienna, British businessman Michael (Law) has arranged to meet Slovakian prostitute Blanka (Siposova) on her first night on the job. But the situation shifts, and Michael ends up thinking about his wife (Weisz) in London.

Meanwhile, she's having a fling with a Brazilian (Cazarre) whose girlfriend (Flor) is fed up with his infidelity. On her flight home, she meets a troubled British man (Hopkins) and a recovering sex-offender (Foster). Meanwhile, an Algerian dentist (Debbouze) in Paris is in love with his Russian employee (Drukarova), whose husband (Vdovichenkov) works for a hotheaded gangster (Ivanir).

Continue reading: 360 Review

Outside The Law Review


Very Good
This Oscar-nominated companion piece to 2006's Days of Glory reunites Bouchareb with his three lead actors, playing different characters (with the same names) through the following 15 years of French-Algerian history. It's a riveting, ultimately melodramatic portrait of a key moment in history.

In the mid-1950s, three Algerian brothers who have experienced pain at the hands of their colonial French rulers reunite in a Paris shantytown. Said (Debbouze) has brought their mother (Boudraa) to France as he seeks to money-making opportunities, Messaoud (Zem) is back from serving for France in the Indochina war, and the intellectual Abdelkader (Bouajila) is just out of prison. All three become involved in Algeria's resistance movement in different ways, as ruthless antiterrorist cop Faivre (Blancan) uses increasingly violent methods to find them.

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Rachid Bouchareb, Chafia Boudraa, Sami Boujila, Jamel Debbouze and Roschdy Zem - Rachid Bouchareb, Chafia Boudraa, Sami Boujila, Jamel Debbouze and Roschdy Zem Friday 21st May 2010 at Cannes Film Festival Cannes, France

Rachid Bouchareb, Chafia Boudraa, Sami Boujila, Jamel Debbouze and Roschdy Zem
Rachid Bouchareb

Days Of Glory Review


Very Good
Every coin has two sides: Rialto's recent reappraisal of Jean-Pierre Melville's peerless Army of Shadows gave us the spy story of the French Resistance that fought a hushed war on the streets and frostbitten open fields of northern France. While that war was silently being fought, a much louder war was being waged on the battlefields to liberate France from the Nazis which is depicted in vivid detail in Rachid Bouchareb's Days of Glory. There are also ulterior motives: where Army of Shadows used the Resistance as a way to study vengeance, loneliness and paranoia, Days of Glory uses the battlefield to confront the obvious racial bias the French Command had against its soldiers from Algeria, Morocco, and Senegal.

Rather than focusing on the battles and no-man-left-behind rhetoric, Days of Glory follows four soldiers as they make their landing in Merseilles and take a long, daunting trip towards the Alsatian front, where they have at it against a group of Nazi soldiers trying to overtake a small town. The leader, Abdelkader (Sami Bouajila in a haunting performance), has the weight of social injustice and racism hanging round his neck while his second-in-command Messaoud (the great Roschdy Zem) is harboring an uncertain love for a white girl he fell for during leave. They attempt to correct the racial strife that goes on (most notably in a scene concerning withheld produce) and try to protect young, misguided Saïd (Jamel Debbouze) from getting ripped to shreds when he becomes the commanding leader's lapdog.

Continue reading: Days Of Glory Review

She Hate Me Review


Weak
She Hate Me borrows its title from "He Hate Me," a.k.a. Rod Smart of the XFL (the now-defunct WWE-sponsored extreme football league), but just as this pointless non-sequitur of a title has nothing to do with the film it adorns, Spike Lee's latest tosses together largely unrelated social commentary, broad humor, and nonsensical racial and sexual stereotypes in a vain attempt to critique modern-day romance and big business. Beginning with close-ups of billowing U.S. currency which culminate in the image of a George W. Bush-decorated three-dollar bill, and ending with a goofy "go forth and procreate, young man" rallying cry for its whorish African-American protagonist, the film is structured like a series of punch lines aimed squarely at what Lee sees as America's racist, corrupt white power structure. Too bad its story - about courageous whistle-blowing, lesbian procreation, and a black man's need to stand up, take responsibility for his actions, and do the right thing - doesn't do almost anything right.

Lee's initial target for censure is the crooked corporate culture that fosters brazenly greedy and duplicitous companies such as Enron and Worldcom. Jack Armstrong (Anthony Mackie) is a vice president at a pharmaceutical company whose new HIV cure has been rejected by the FDA. When he discovers a conspiracy orchestrated by the corporation's arrogant, racist CEO (Woody Harrelson) and his ruthless Martha Stewart-ish boss (Ellen Barkin) to cook the books and keep employees and shareholders in the dark about the new drug's ineffectiveness, Jack rats out his superiors to the SEC, and the price for betraying "the family" is immediate dismissal. As luck would have it, though, a new money-making venture falls directly into his, ahem, lap - his ex-fiancé Fatima (Kerry Washington), who left him for another woman, now wants to pay him $10,000 to impregnate her and her Dominican girlfriend. Before long, Armstrong - in some sort of filthier version of the Patrick Dempsey '80s cult classic Loverboy - is occupying his time spreading his seed through NYC's upper-crust lesbian community (which includes Monica Bellucci as a Mafioso don's daughter) for wads of cash.

Continue reading: She Hate Me Review

SHE HATE ME Review


Bad

What could Spike Lee have been thinking?

Right on the heels of an unalloyed masterpiece, "25th Hour," the great American filmmaker delivers "She Hate Me," a bizarre, head-scratching hodgepodge of poorly executed bad ideas.

Many film buffs consider Lee a hit-and-miss director, but even his biggest failures ("Jungle Fever," "Summer of Sam," "Bamboozled") have had some kind of coherence, some alignment of angry, passionate ideas, painted with Lee's singular vision and voice.

Continue reading: SHE HATE ME Review

Jamel Debbouze

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Jamel Debbouze Movies

360 Movie Review

360 Movie Review

Loosely based on Arthur Schnitzler's play La Ronde, this beautifully assembled film is easy to...

Outside the Law Movie Review

Outside the Law Movie Review

This Oscar-nominated companion piece to 2006's Days of Glory reunites Bouchareb with his three lead...

Days of Glory, Trailer Trailer

Days of Glory, Trailer Trailer

Days of GloryTrailer1943. They had never stepped foot on French soil but because France was...

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Days Of Glory Movie Review

Days Of Glory Movie Review

Every coin has two sides: Rialto's recent reappraisal of Jean-Pierre Melville's peerless Army of Shadows...

She Hate Me Movie Review

She Hate Me Movie Review

She Hate Me borrows its title from "He Hate Me," a.k.a. Rod Smart of the...

SHE HATE ME Movie Review

SHE HATE ME Movie Review

What could Spike Lee have been thinking?Right on the heels of an unalloyed masterpiece, "25th...

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