Archive for the ‘CULT MOVIES’ Category

“City of Fear”, a film by Dummies!

Odile is at the film market in Cannes to promote “Red Is Dead”, a horror film like “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” where a communist serial killer murders his victims  with a sickle and a hammer. But the room is always empty before the end of the screening. Fortunately enough for the press officer, a series of murders similar to those in the film -the projectionists of “red is dead” are killed the same way- gets the film out of anonymity and make a unexpected publicity.

Simon, the lead actor who has not acted since the release of the film at Cannes is recalled by Odile. The latter assigns him a bodyguard, Serge Karamazov, who, smarter than ever, already suspects the presence of a “serial killer”.

Cult film if any, “City of Fear” is full of gags. It captivates the audience from beginning to end  by keeping the suspense in the most absurd way. The non-sense humor of the “dummies team” is absutely great and it takes several viewings to identify all the brainwaves of the film, some dumber than the others. A few memorable passages – the Carioca, the chase, the outcome – are still etched in the collective memory.

With among others: Chantal Lauby, Alain Chabat, Dominique Farrugia and Gérard Darmon. A movie directed by Alain Barberian in 1994.


Hatred, a film by Mathieu Kassovitz. 1995

“This is the story of a man falling from a building of 50 storeys. The guy at as he falls, says constantly to himself: So far so good, so far so good,so far so good. But the important thing is not falling, it’s the landing. ” With this prologue in voiceover, begins this movie now passed down to posterity as a cult film. Just after that, you can see a Molotov cocktail engulf the planet earth. And then archive images of riots in suburbs with the names of the actors that appear, typed as a police report. Bob Marley sings in the background “burning and looting”.

The film begins, it is 10:38, the TV news tells us of incidents that have exploded in the city of lilies after an inspector had beaten up a young man who now stands between life and death. Finish the images provided by the media, now the camera film Vince and Saïd who hang out together. They join their friend Hubert who trains himself in the boxing gym that was burned down the night before. A policeman lost his gun during the riots. Vince reveals to his buddies that he found it, and if their friend Abdel dies in the hospital, he will restore the balance by killing a policeman. Hubert tries to reason with his friend and then goes away, pissed-off by the attitude of his friend. Eventually the three of them will meet to go to Paris and see a guy who owes money to Saïd. Vince takes his weapon.

The film shot in black and white and directed with great visual effects,  follows three young people from different backrounds in their ghetto and then in the capital city where they are cramped. In addition to having burned the memory of French cinema as a film emblematic of the ghetto issue, “Hatred” has helped popularized the French ghetto slang known as “verlan” (back slang), the language of the youth in the suburbs which is expressed by Vince, Hubert and Said. In the soundtrack, along with Bob Marley’s song, is “Killer Cut” played by a DJ. Very significant is the passage “Fuck the Police / Non je ne regrette rien. Awarded as best directed film at Cannes and César for best film, the film was such a critical and public success the director came to report that his film does not belong to him anymore.