“The World is Ours”: La Haine and the New France

Gwiz, think Scarface, the original one. After that, think Nas, the original one

Antiquity and Revenge on Screen

Mathieu Kassovitz’s film shows a France that most Americans would not expect, given that most associations with French films in Parisian settings are more along the lines of cutesy Amelie(which Kassovitz costarred in) than a gritty film that exposes the dark underside of the projects of Paris.  La Haine is a film that shows a France plagued by gangs and police brutality.  Kassovitz, who grew up in Paris, makes several interesting choices that make this film a commentary on life in the projects, and a commentary on French society.

The thesis of this film seems to be the anecdote that is repeated at the beginning and the end; the story is told about a man who is falling from a skyscraper; every time he passes a floor he says to himself, “so far so good.”  “But it’s not how you fall that matters; it’s how you land.”  At the…

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