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State of Siege
     

State of Siege

5.0 1
Director: Costa-Gavras, Yves Montand, Renato Salvatori, O.E. Hasse

Cast: Costa-Gavras, Yves Montand, Renato Salvatori, O.E. Hasse

 

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Like most of Costa-Gavras' political thrillers, the French State of Siege is based on a true story. The incident dramatized herein is the kidnapping of a U.S. official somewhere in Latin America. The director's sympathies clearly lie with the kidnappers, especially since the official (played by Yves Montand), ostensibly an expert in traffic control, has been

Overview

Like most of Costa-Gavras' political thrillers, the French State of Siege is based on a true story. The incident dramatized herein is the kidnapping of a U.S. official somewhere in Latin America. The director's sympathies clearly lie with the kidnappers, especially since the official (played by Yves Montand), ostensibly an expert in traffic control, has been assigned as special advisor to the government's secret police, training these worthies in the art of the torturing of political prisoners. Uruguay was the country where this story actually took place; though no names are given, there's little doubting the identity of Costa-Gavras' fictional locale. Despite its up-to-date radicalism, State of Siege adheres to time-honored Hollywood formula, with ugly, vulgar bad guys vs. handsome, articulate good guys.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Michael Costello
Costa-Gavras' re-creation of the true story of the interrogation of a CIA case officer by unnamed urban revolutionaries based on the Tupamoros of Uruguay is an unsettling political thriller. Urban guerrillas kidnap a CIA agent (Yves Montand) who has been training the country's police in sophisticated counter-insurgency and torture techniques while under shallow cover. Shot in Chile with the approval of President Allende shortly before his untimely assassination, the film was the first to detail the uglier side of the kind of paramilitary training that the U.S. has often performed for its authoritarian allies. But, after numerous subsequent revelations about torture training in the U.S. and abroad, the film seems less shocking than it did at the time. Nonetheless, the film's early sequences are gripping, as the bewildered official is called to account for his actions. As the questioning wears on, however, the film becomes as repetitious as a piece of agitprop, more a righteous cri de coeur than a subtle analysis of political oppression. Montand, who had earlier played a heroic Greek politician in Costa-Gavras' Z, is effective here.

Product Details

Release Date:
05/26/2015
UPC:
0715515144513
Original Release:
1972
Rating:
NR
Source:
Criterion
Region Code:
A
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Time:
2:01:00
Sales rank:
6,419

Special Features

New conversation between Costa-Gavras, and film scholar Peter Cowie; NBC News excerpts from 1970 on the kidnapping of Dan A. Mitrione, on which the film is based

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Yves Montand Philip Michael Santore
Renato Salvatori Captain Lopez
O.E. Hasse Carlos Ducas
Jacques Weber Hugo
Jean-Luc Bideau Este
Evangeline Peterson Mrs. Santore
Maurice Teynac Minister
Yvette Etievant Woman Senator
Nemesio Antunes President of the Republic
Harald Wolff Minister of Foreign Affairs
André Falcon Deputy Fabbri
Mario Montilles Fontana
Jerry Brouer Lee
Jean-Francois Gobbi Journalist
Eugenio Guzman Interior Ministry Spokesman
Maurice Jacquemont Head of Law School
Roberto Navarette Romero
Gloria Lass Student
Alejandro Cohen Manuel
Martha Contreras Alicia
Jacques Perrin Telephonist

Technical Credits
Costa-Gavras Director,Screenwriter
Françoise Bonnot Editor
Silvio Caiozzi Camera Operator
Jacques D'Ovidio Production Designer
Pierre-Wiliam Glenn Cinematographer
D. Ovidio Art Director
Max Palevsky Producer
Jacques Perrin Producer
Franco Solinas Screenwriter
Mikis Theodorakis Score Composer

Customer Reviews

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State of Siege 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
TasteOfClass More than 1 year ago
A true piece of history made into film-form by one of the best politically conscious filmmakers of the past century, Costa-Gavras. This film, along with the Confession, are must buys for any lover of cinema and history, especially cold war era revolving around the effects of communism in Latin America and across the globe.