Sordid Cinema Podcast
Sordid Cinema Podcast #551: Why ‘La Haine’ is as Explosive 25 Years On

Sordid Cinema Podcast #551: Why ‘La Haine’ is as Explosive 25 Years On

June 16, 2020

La Haine Podcast Review

Twenty-five years ago, Mathieu Kassovitz’s French black-and-white drama crime drama La Haine sent shockwaves through the 1995 Cannes Film Festival, where it received a standing ovation and the Best Director prize.

A story of social unrest, La Haine was inspired by three isolated incidents involving the killing of unarmed young people by police officers (including the famous case of the 17-year-old Congolese Makomé M’Bowolé) that led to three weeks of riots in Paris and surrounding areas.

Starring Hubert Koundé, Saïd Taghmaoui, and Vincent Cassel (in his breakout performance), La Haine is set over 19 consecutive hours in the lives of three young men living in the impoverished, multi-ethnic public housing complexes known as Chanteloup-les-Vignes. We follow the three of them in the aftermath of a riot in a banlieue that left their teenage friend Abdel comatose in a hospital after being brutally beaten by the police. When Vinz recovers a gun lost by a cop during the riot, he feels empowered and decides to take revenge.

Twenty years on, La Haine feels more relevant than ever. It’s arguably the best film made about systemic racism and police brutality— easily the best film released in 2015— and one of the most powerful pieces of urban cinema ever made. Today on the Sordid Cinema Podcast we reflect on the film’s lasting significance and why it holds a special place in our hearts.

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Sordid Cinema Podcast #550: Is ‘Dog Soldiers’ a Bitch of a Werewolf Movie?

Sordid Cinema Podcast #550: Is ‘Dog Soldiers’ a Bitch of a Werewolf Movie?

June 10, 2020

This week on the Sordid Cinema Podcast we discuss Neil Marshall’s first feature— the low-budget werewolf action/adventure siege film titled, Dog Soldiers. Frightening, funny, and packed with action, Dog Soldiers is considered one of the five best werewolf movies ever made and was an incredible showcase of Marshall’s (then) burgeoning talent.

It certainly made a name for the director who has since gone onto a highly promising career as a genre director, but is it as good as they say it is?

This week, Tim Maison joins us to help answer several questions we have about the movie including the unexpected plot twist and whether this movie could have used a better script. All this and more!

Sordid Cinema Podcast #549: ‘The Vast of Night’ is a Fantastic Sci-Fi Directorial Debut

Sordid Cinema Podcast #549: ‘The Vast of Night’ is a Fantastic Sci-Fi Directorial Debut

June 2, 2020

This week we take a break from reviving older classics to take a look at a recently released indie sci-fi gem called The Vast of Night. The film (now available on Amazon Prime) depicts a fateful evening in a small town in 1950s New Mexico as they host a rival high school basketball team for the big game, but also may be getting some visitors from even further out of town. It’s up to a young switchboard operator and a radio DJ to uncover the truth. Rick and Patrick are once again joined by critic Stephen Silver to discuss the many things that director Andrew Patterson does right in his feature debut, from virtuoso camerawork to the fantastic rhythm he develops using editing. We also praise the engaging performances of the film’s two leads, who anchor the entire production.

The Vast of Night promises sci-fi creeps along the lines of The Twilight Zone, but does it deliver on this? Do all the stylistic approaches work in supporting the story and tone? And just why is that basketball game so important?

For all this and more, have a listen to our breakdown of this wonderful little film!

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