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11'09"01: September 11 (2002)

Cast: Sean Penn
Director: Danis Tanovic, Danis Tanovic, Claude Lelouch, more...
    see all cast/crew...
Rating: Not Rated
Studio: Empire Pictures
Genre: Drama, Foreign, France, Japan, Middle East, Experimental/Avant-Garde, Egypt, Mexico, Iran, Israel, UK
Running Time: 135 min.
Languages: English, French, Japanese, Arabic, F, Serbian
Subtitles: English, French
    see additional details...

In the aftermath of the tragedies on September 11, 2001, the French film company Studio Canal called upon a group of filmmakers, representing various regions of the world, to address the scope of the situation in however broad or intimate a context as they saw fit. The one guideline they were given was that no one film could exceed 11 minutes, nine seconds, and one frame. The resulting omnibus film, 11'09"01, showed at festivals around the world the following year and garnered a theatrical release in 2003. Each filmmaker's entry takes a different approach: French director Claude Lelouch tells the tale of a World Trade Center tour guide who is on the verge of a breakup with his deaf girlfriend when the terrorist attacks hit; similarly, Hollywood actor-director Sean Penn chronicles the lonely existence of an old man living not far from the Twin Towers. Egyptian director Youssef Chahine and British social realist filmmaker Ken Loach created the most controversy with their entries, which, respectively, address the points-of-view of a suicide bomber and of a Chilean who recalls the brutal coup funded by the United States in his country on September 11, 1973. Alejandro González Iñárritu's piece is the most abstract, taking images from television on the day of the attacks and cutting them with selected bursts of sound. Samira Makhmalbaf, Danis Tanovic, and Idrissa Ouedraogo all tell small-scale stories of the effects of the attacks on tiny villages in Iran, Serbia, and Burkina Faso, respectively. ~ Michael Hastings, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

annoying by RDooleyz May 27, 2006 - 10:24 AM PDT
0 out of 7 members found this review helpful
kitsch to the max.

An awesome movie by NMalik April 9, 2005 - 4:49 PM PDT
4 out of 4 members found this review helpful
I'd like to thank Greencine for including this film in their database. I really appreciated the efforts put forth by the Producer of this film, the FRENCH, and all the talented artists who's work was included in this film. It doesnt address the film from just one point of view - our side or their side.
C'est la ARTe!

That Day by talltale October 30, 2004 - 12:47 PM PDT
10 out of 11 members found this review helpful
I first saw this 11-part movie at a special screening here in new York City about a year after 9/11 occurred. At the time I thought it was pretty damn good. Now, after watching it again, two years later, it seems even better and more relevant.

What initially sounded like a dumb idea and a mere stunt (having eleven moviemakers from around the world each film a nine-minute segment/story connected in some way to 9/11) has turned into a brilliant prism through which to see various views of this event.
By turns horrific, sad, strange, even charming and funny, the finished product proves that the event (together with their assignment) inspired these filmmakers to come up with some of their best work. There is only a single clinker in the bunch: ironically and sadly, it's the American segment in which Sean Penn directs Ernest Borgnine to overact in piece of silly, sentimental schlock. But the rest of the episodes range from very good to marvelous, approaching the event from a fascinating range of angles that are intelligent, political, humane and rich. Among the jewels, a "romance" from France's Claude Lelouche, the true-life story from India's Mira Nair, a "letter" from Ken Loach, a typically naive yet sweet and reasoned self-inquisition from Egypt's Youssef Chahine and an utterly strange nine minutes from Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu. The Mexican director uses sound with snippets of visuals to create a mood of nearly unbearable tension, released at last by light--and a simple, meaningful question that stops you dead in your tracks.

Whatever your "political stance," if you have at this point a remotely open mind, I think you will welcome being challenged by these filmmakers. Thank you to the producers of SEPTEMBER 11, who have given the world something much-needed, lasting and (probably) great.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 6.41)
51 Votes
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