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Friday, October 13, 2006

Bore-trait of Zizou

Don't bother going to see 'Zidane: A 21st Century Portrait'. Don't bother waiting for it to come out on DVD either. Don't buy it at Christmas for your Dad or brother, with the sly intention of watching it yourself.

Don't wait for cable TV to show it next year. Forget it even exists. It is crap. I know, I went to see it last night. I want my 90 minutes back.

If anyone ever missed a sitter in front of a gaping empty net, it is the makers of this nonsense. What better subject for a fascinating footie documentary than the best player of this generation, Zizou?

In addition to his supreme talent, he is also that supreme rarity in the modern world - a Muslim role model loved by all. Even the armed guards at the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem once conceded to me that no player was more gifted, no player more capable of uniting entire audiences in captive appreciation of his abilities.

Zinedine Zidane's history - the Algerian heritage, the upbringing in the tense, dangerous streets of Marseilles, the rise through French teams to Juventus, then to Real Madrid as the best of the famous Galacticos - is only part of what is missing from the nonsense I watched last night.

Let me explain what the filmmakers have done. If you've ever watched a Premiership game on Sky, you're probably familiar with their 'playercam', which trains a camera on one player for 15 minutes. Make that seventeen cameras on Zizou for 90 minutes, and you've got this boreathon of a movie.

Despite what some gullible people might say, this is not some oblique masterpiece, or an art moment to savour. It is 90 minutes of a sweaty man, trudging around the Bernabeu, waiting for his teammates to pass him the ball.

This film, much more than his headbutting Marco Materazzi in the World Cup final, will diminish memories of Zizou's genius. If Zinedine Zidane's magic can be boiled down to pixillated phone camera footage of his boots to the sound of a turgid drone by Mogwai, then there is no magic in football.

This artwank should have been left in whatever pretentious Parisian gallery it emanated from. I hope, now that Zidane has retired, that someone will make a proper documentary and portrait of him.

But this isn't it.


WorldbyStorm said...

My God, JC, you really are angry...

JC Skinner said...

I did warn you!

WorldbyStorm said...

You did. I'll keep reading to ensure you don't reach dangerously high blood pressure levels...

MelloBiafra said...

I'm working on a Paul Robinson DVD! Make the perfect Christmas Gift...for all your English Friends!!!!

JC Skinner said...

I'd like to point any lovers of Zidane's mastery of the art of soccer in the direction of this site: http://lovezidane.com/site/
which is a much better testimony to the master's ability than the duff film currently doing the rounds.