Clash DVD Review

C4A police van. Two sides bitterly fighting over the situation. The Muslim Brotherhood leader, tries to pass a law that will make him Pharaoh elect. A journalist is arrested. Then the two sides are arrested. One is pro military and wants the MB out. The other is MB and its sympathisers. They are stuck in the van. Sun beats down, tempers rise up. The clash outside is now magnified inside. The police need to find a place to stow them. The problem is the revolt is under way and the MB is fighting. So the van is stuck and the groups have to confront each other.

C2Political cinema is a difficult thing to get right. Take the works of Costa Gavros or Gillo Pontecorvo. One layered political commentary with a narrative, so diffusing the events into a personal setting. The other took the over view and picked pieces that constructed a whole, no judgements, no fingers pointed. Now in Clash we have more then a passing resemblance to Gavros. It wants to commentate on the events but it wants to fix them to personal ( or in this case multiple person) narratives.

C3These underscore the myriad issues involved in the incident and the problem of political management. This issue is treated with some level of imbalance however because the police and military are seen as bystanders. They are enforcing a removal of soon to be, theological dictator. The facts speak against some of this in the events but they also speak for the horrific nature of the MB. It does get that the military was beleaguered but not as culpable as it was. They also allow for the emotional resonance with different community groups in Egypt to be presented as a balance. This does however often mean that people became caricatures of say religious groups. I am not complaining, just stressing that the motivation of the piece is to balance the argument.

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Simon Kennedy

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