MADE IN FRANCE

U.S. Premiere • Drama, Thriller • France, 2015

DCP • 2.35 • Dolby SRD • Color • 94 min

Directed by: Nicolas Boukhrief
Written by: Éric Besnard, Nicolas Boukhrief
Cinematography: Patrick Ghiringhelli
Film Editing: Lydia Decobert
Original Score: Robin Coudert
Produced by: Clément Miserez Radar Films
Cast: Malik Zidi (Sam), Dimitri Storoge (Hassan), François Civil (Christophe), Nassim Si Ahmed (Driss)
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This darkly atmospheric shock-thriller takes you on a white-knuckle ride inside a cell of homegrown extremists dedicated to bringing jihad to the streets of Paris. Sam is a Franco-Algerian journalist hoping to write a tell-all exposing the threat of domestic terrorism. Using his knowledge of Islam, he infiltrates a small cadre of extremists led by Hassan, a disgruntled shoe salesman whose chief leadership credential is having met “the principals” on his pilgrimage to Mecca. Hassan instructs everyone to “become invisible.” From the outside, it all appears frighteningly ordinary, except for Sam, who is now in the precarious position of a normal guy trying to look like an extremist trying to look normal. Sam discovers that the cell is comprised of young men who, far from marching in lockstep, have wildly different motivations. But as the plan moves closer to fruition, suspicion grips the conspirators, putting more than his book in immediate danger.

When writer/director Nicolas Boukhrief and his co-writer Éric Besnard (Babylon A.D.) began to research this subject, their principal reference was the Paris commuter train bombing in 1995.  They had no way of knowing just how prophetic the film would be, nor how much its commercial life would suffer for it. Slated initially for release in early 2015, the devastating attack on Charlie Hebdo gave the original distributor cold feet. Then the tragic Bataclan attack, coming just one week before the film’s new release date, led to a second cancellation. For Boukhrief, a genre specialist, the film was conceived firstly as entertainment, but its subject matter struck raw nerves in France. Known for crime dramas like Cash Truck (COLCOA 2004), Cortex (2008), and Sphinx (COLCOA 2010), Boukhrief began his career as a journalist, first as an editor for the genre film magazine Starfix, then creating the Canal + series Le Journal du cinéma, which aired for more than a decade. His transition to filmmaking began in 1993, when he co-wrote Tout le monde n’a pas eu la chance d’avoir des parents communistes with director/co-writer Jean-Jacques Zilbermann.

QUOTES:

“…a thoughtful and sobering ‘what if’ scenario of home-grown, domestically targeted terrorism.”
– Peter Debruge, Variety

“This unpleasant feeling to have in front of you a monster hidden under the usual mask is the great artistic success of Made in France.
– Thomas Coispel, Le Blog Du Cinema

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