Thursday, March 04, 2010

Samt el qusur

Les Silences du Palais / Palatsin hiljaisuus / Det tysta palatset. FR/TN 1994. PC: Cinétéléfilms (Tunis) / MAT Films (Paris). D+SC+ED: Moufida Tlatli. Adaptation and dialogue: Nouri Bouzid. DP: Youssef Ben Youssef. AD: Claude Bennys. M: Anouar Brahem. CAST: Amel Hedhili (Khedija), Hend Sabri (Alia as a child), Ghalia Lacorix (grown-upAlia), Kamel Fazaa (Sidi Ali), Sami Bouajila (Lotfi). 130 min. Language: Arabic. A print with Finnish / Swedish subtitles viewed at Cinema Orion (History of the Cinema), Helsinki, 4 March 2010.

A used print with rainy scratches in the heads and the tails of the reels but with a good definition of colour.

The first Arab feature film directed by a woman.

I saw for the first time Moufida Tlatli's remarkable film about the growth of female self-confidence and independence in Tunisia, situated at the palace where the protagonist's mother was the prince's mistress. The protagonist Alia returns to the palace in the 1960s and relives in her imagination the past before the independence. I had to leave early, but this film with its powerful atmosphere will deserve revisiting.

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