Friday, April 19, 2013
"Paris Under Watch": riveting thriller about the "politics" of terror plays at FilmfestDC at the same time Boston suspect 2 is captured
Tonight, I saw the virtuoso new French-Arabic thriller “Paris Under Watch” (“Aux yeux de tous”, “Through all of our eyes”) by Cedric Jimenez, at the AMC Mazza as a Filmfest DC presentation.
While I watched the film on a prepurchased ticket (the large auditorium was almost sold out), a heavy thunderstorm raged outside, adding sound effects to the opening scene with the Paris subway explosion.
During the time I was in the theater, apparently the second suspect in the Boston Marathon attack was apprehended. It was uncanny that this film was aired at the same time, on April 19. Another patron mentioned the arrest , which he had seen on the cell phone, as we left the theater.
Early in the film, the media claims that security tapes of the event were destroyed, but soon we see a figure, from the back, male (from the forearms with blond hairs), stocking cap, entering Linux commands into some sort of command center, with all kinds of connections, terminals, and ham equipment around. We see the entire story of the attack, of how Sam (Olivier Bathelemy) was tricked into what he thought was a fake attack, how his girl friend Marie (Valerie Sibilia) wants them to turn themselves in – even though Sam did this to raise money for Marie’s mom. He go from filial responsibility (where Muslim immigrants typically have to send money home) to the politics of terror.
In the end of this fast-moving film, we learn the capability of both governments and teenagers living with their moms, with no real moral compass yet.
The official site from Film Distribution of France is here.
This will be a real hit in the US when it finds North American distribution.
Wikipedia attribution link for Eiffel Tower picture, near where I stayed in May 2001.
It’s important to note that many stations on the Paris Metro have plexiglass security to protect the tracks. No US city does. That point well made in a 1999 Nightline special about a hypothetical attack on a US subway.