Video: La Haine

April 18, 2007

After twelve short years, Mathieu Kassovitz's La Haine makes it to Stateside dvd courtesy of Criterion, of course. We frequently sing the praises of Criterion and all they do, and this is no exception, but we're especially stoked to finally have this in a format that is not a heinously warbled and fuzzed out VHS tape. La Haine (that's Hate for the freedom speakers) was Kassovitz's debut film and earned him a fair amount of la haine from the French government for his portrayal of police brutality in the mostly immigrant banlieues of Paris. It's still an essential hip hop film and one of the most impressive debuts we can think of. Kassovitz later went on to play Amelie's quirky dreamboat as well as direct some so-so studio flicks, and the young stars Vincent Cassel, Hubert Koundé and Saïd Taghmaoui have all played prominent roles in major American films, but we always remember them for La Haine. Above is one of its signature scenes, a crane shot beginning from DJ Cut Killer's project window and sweeping over the banlieue terraces, and you can also check the official trailer

(From loyal reader Andrew Webster, a correction: It's actually not a crane shot. Instead they strapped a small camera on a remote control helicopter, basically making it THE best shot i've ever seen in a movie. Thanks Andrew!)

Posted: April 18, 2007
Video: La Haine