As part of Jadaliyya’s new Photography and Audiovisual Narratives page launch on the 7 July, which coincided with Algeria’s independence day, we hosted a live, online discussion of the Battle of Algiers film. The discussion was facilitated by Butheina Kazim, founder of Cinema Akil.
The Battle of Algiers film, produced by and based on the memoirs of FLN (Algerian Liberation Movement) leader Saadi Yacef and has been critically acclaimed for its counter-revolutionary narrative. The discussion revolves around the film’s impact on the aftermath of Algerian independence, how it has inspired the genre of revolutionary cinema, and it’s influence on discussions about colonial and subaltern narratives and their representations on screen and beyond.
Guest speakers will include:
- Hisham Aidi Senior Lecturer in the Discipline of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University
- Myriam Djelouat Co-Founder & Chief Marketing Officer - Mille World
- Amine Hattou Founder, Dima Cinema + Filmmaker
- Nezar Andary Professor and Filmmaker
The Battle of Algiers is a 1966 Italian-Algerian historical war film, co-written and directed by Gillo Pontecorvo. It is based on the revolutionary activity of the FLN, (Front de libération Nationale/National Liberation Front) during the Algerian War of Independence (1954–1962) against the colonial French government in North Africa; The film mainly concentrates on the revolutionary fighter Ali La Pointe during the years between 1954 and 1957, when guerrilla fighters of the FLN regrouped and expanded into the Casbah, the citadel of Algiers. The movie, which casts actual members of the FLN in main roles, has been regarded as one of the most influential representations of guerrilla organization and the methods, including torture, used by colonial powers to contain it.
About Butheina Kazim
Butheina Kazim is the founder of Cinema Akil; the first arthouse cinema in Dubai and the Gulf region. She was a Fulbright scholar of Media, Culture, and Communication at NYU and has worked as a project manager in television and radio stations in the UAE at media conglomerates Arab Media Group and Dubai Media Incorporated. Kazim has contributed to publications including Al Jazeera, Gulf News, and others. She has been independently involved in programming cinema popups including Abu Dhabi Film Festival at The Pavilion and a Focus on the UAE program at the Short Film Week (Kurzfilmwoche) in Regensburg, Germany in addition to overseeing all programming of Cinema Akil’s pop-ups and in its permanent home. She is the producer of short documentary ‘Letters to Palestine’; winner of the Special Jury Prize at the Abu Dhabi Film Festival (2010). Kazim is a member of the Steering Committee of the Network of Arab Alternative Screens (NAAS) of which Cinema Akil is a member space. Follow her on Instagram @butheinahk and Twitter @butheina.
The film can be found on a variety of platforms depending on your geographical region:
Criterion Channel: https://www.criterionchannel.com/the-battle-of-algiers/videos/the-battle-of-algiers
Amazon Prime: https://www.amazon.com/Battle-Algiers-English-Subtitled/dp/B004CZ8AG0
Amazon Prime: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Battle-Algiers-Brahim-Haggiag/dp/B00ESQF7XW