La désintégration (2011)

Taking a break from 31 Days of Horror, I went to a screening of La désintégration, a French drama about racism, terrorism and desperation. (Actually, when I put it like that, seems like it fits in with 31 Days of Horror quite nicely.)

The film centers around a young Muslim man named Ali, who is trying to complete his degree. The only missing piece is an internship. Everyone agrees his C.V. looks good, but even after sending hundreds of applications, Ali can’t find someone to give him a chance. Ali has little choice but to believe racism is behind his inability to secure a position. His parents and brother tell him to persevere, but it isn’t long before Ali meets Djamel, an Islamic fundamentalist who convinces Ali and two other young men that trying to work within a broken, racist system will lead them nowhere – they must fight against that system in order to make any sort of change. Djamel instructs the men to separate themselves from their families and to focus on the only thing that matters: blowing up NATO.

I don’t know much about the sociopolitical climate of France, so this was interesting to see. It wasn’t entertaining, exactly – but I think it’s fairly clear the film’s purpose was not to entertain. I will say after watching it I felt empathetic towards the main group of men who appear to have been swindled into martyring themselves by a zealot who clearly picks on the emotionally fragile and desperate. In the end though, I think the film was a little too one-sided; it would have been more interesting if shades of gray had been introduced – perhaps we could have seen more of Ali’s brother and sister, and how they coped with adversity in comparison?


2 Responses to “La désintégration (2011)”

  1. 1 ladyfaceladyface
    October 16, 2012 at 2:53 am

    It always comes downs to shades of grey for me, too…

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