Drawing on all the tricks of Hollywood action films, Nabil Ayouch produces an efficient cinema. His third feature film uses and abuses them a little too systematically, with its punchy music that accentuates the tight, flash montage, its movements decomposed in freeze frames, its fluid steadycam shots that film the various journeys, its keyed-in images that illustrate important ideas, its hazy landscapes filmed from inside cars, its coca-cola framing, and rays of light in the dark
Kamel is a real cop. We recognise him at once. We’ve already seen this sombre, impenetrable policeman who never shows his feelings, who lives in an austere room, and whose only friend is a kind-hearted transvestite, a thousand times before
During the course of an enquiry, a young pretty woman and a sick child walk into his life, opening up his heart.
Yet it is here that this film whose effects are so irritating adopts a new rhythm, to the point even that the poetry really works when his car starts to float in the sky like Mary Poppins. It works too because Hicham Moussoune, one of the children in Ayouch’s previous film, Ali Zaoua, plays the child character and remains completely natural. It works because the scenes which avoid going for easy options find a just depth, as they are pictorial without falling into aestheticism, their gestures, gazes and positions sufficing to conveys things without being too insistent. It works above all because the complicity that emerges between all these lost souls reinforces the film’s ubiquity, a constantly-fuelled ambiguity between feeling and interests, generosity and manipulation. The cop’s double game echoes the ambivalence of this woman that he struggles to find guilty of murder, the nature of the sexual relations shown or hinted at, the presence of the transvestite, the suspicions of all kinds. No one is really clear-cut nor knows which way to turn. It is impossible not to see a parallel with Mohammed VI’s Morocco, where everyone wonders what to believe and for how long.
///Article N° : 5645