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France, Canada · 2015
1h 19m
Director Philippe Faucon
Starring Soria Zeroual, Zita Hanrot, Kenza Noah Aïche, Chawki Amari
Genre Drama, Family

Fatima, a Moroccan-born woman who now lives in France with her two teenage daughters, with whom she is barely able to communicate.

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What are critics saying?


Village Voice by Bilge Ebiri

Faucon has built his story around very gentle, glancing blows. But this is not the focused austerity of a Robert Bresson; the director’s level distance and jaded eye lead more to lifelessness than a revealing simplicity of expression.


Variety by Justin Chang

This poignant slice-of-life proves as modest in length (78 minutes) as it is generous in rueful insight and emotional complexity.


Los Angeles Times by Kenneth Turan

Faucon, whose own grandparents came to France without speaking the language, has a gift for artfully removing the melodrama from potentially overheated situations, leaving behind a scenario that is honest, direct and dramatic without any sense of special pleading or situations pushed too hard.


The Hollywood Reporter by Leslie Felperin

One of the flaws that keeps the film being as engaging as it might be is the way every shot seems to last about the same amount of time, producing a monotonous visual rhythm that only serves to make the plot seem even more episodic.


The Film Stage by Michael Snydel

Fatima inevitably falls into a catch-22: every time it presents an insightful new cultural situation, it starts to feel less like a film, and more like a series of richly detailed sketches.


The New York Times by Stephen Holden

If the movie, loosely based on two books by Fatima Elayoubi, tells a familiar story of immigrants struggling to make something of themselves in an alien culture (Fatima speaks some French but reads only Arabic), it does so in a tone that is kindhearted but clearheaded, and the performances are low-key and believable.

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