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Philippe Faucon Franța, 2015
The most violent scenes are the ones when Fatima simply remains silent. Silence is a torturous and imposed state, and the film traces an emancipation from silence that will come through writing. At the end, a cathartic flow of speech reveals the interiority of this troubled, yet lucid, self-possessed woman.
August 26, 2016
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A bit neorealist and a bit cinéma vérité, a bit documentary and a bit new wave, a bit political and a bit sociological, a bit delicate and daring as well, Fatima, the new film by Philippe Faucon, is also an utterly tender and engaging work, and one that should be not merely seen, but also lived—for despite the complexity of the themes at its core, this touching film is mostly heart, full of life.
August 25, 2016
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The film has its heart in the right place, but there’s something dehumanizing about Faucon’s approach: These characters, it seems, are too important as representational objects to ever become real people. Meaning is conveyed not through behavior but through proclamations.
August 24, 2016
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In Fatima, it’s when Faucon pushes the conventional narrative of selfless motherhood to its sentimental zenith that the film disarms us. It’s almost impossible not to weep in its final depiction of maternal pride, when Fatima quietly looks for her daughter’s name in the sheets posted on the school walls in order to see if she’s finally made it.
March 01, 2016
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There’s a certain kind of tepid French social drama that flaunts its conscientious sensitivity and sense of social justice. Not so here: Faucon’s clear-eyed film, working with matter-of-fact nonprofessionals, simply gets to the heart of the matter.
September 03, 2015
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An unusually nuanced and unsentimental depiction of mother/daughter relationships… A relatively inexperienced actor, Zeroual brings quiet strength and intelligence to her characterisation of Fatima, taking the film to another level with her reading of a poem by Elayoubi, filled with the longing to speak her experience in her own voice, the voice of Fatima.
May 22, 2015
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