In a remote village in the Moroccan High Atlas, day after day passes for a modest family. The mother and her daily chores. The child who fetches water from the spring before going to school. Her elder sister's lost dream of becoming a running champion. The absent-present father, exhausted by inactivity.
Even though the members of the family live in the same space, each seems to lead a separate life, as if in parallel with those of the others. The camera isolates each individual, and captures their personalities and the particularity of their dreams, fears and misfortunes. Editing brings them together in the same film, but each of their stories has its own length and rhythm.
Youssef Filali, Reda Henkam
Cinema Salama (Morocco)
The idea for this film was born during a summer stay with my aunt's family shortly after I had finished my second short film. Whenever I spend a few days there, I feel like I belong in that space. I blend in completely with every detail I observe; they feed my gaze and invade my memory. I felt the need to document all these details with my camera, as if to fix them for eternity, in order to be able to find, wherever I am, these moments and places for which I become nostalgic as soon as I leave them.
When I returned to the village to prepare the film, my childhood memories, both conscious and unconscious, surfaced, and many questions assailed me.
What would I have become if I had grown up here? if this house was mine? if my aunt had been my mother? My cousin Marwa's childhood, mine? The dreams of my cousin Fatima-Zahra, mine? The answer may be (in) this film.
Reda Henkam was born in 1994 in Errachidia, Morocco. After completing his baccalaureate, he began graduate studies at the University of Meknes and Fez, where he obtained his licence in Private Law and then a Master's degree in Criminal Sciences. In 2018, in parallel with studies in Cinema and Theatre at the University of Marrakesh, he directed and produced two short fiction films: Happiness and Nightmares. In 2019, Henkam developed Distances, his first feature-length documentary, which he shot in 2020. At the beginning of 2021, he joined the Moroccan Cinema Centre in Rabat.
Hicham Falah is a French-Moroccan filmmaker born in 1970 in Casablanca. A cinematographer, director and producer, he trained at the Louis Lumière Film School and the Sorbonne Nouvelle University Paris 3. Since 2012, he has run the Agadir International Documentary Film Festival (FIDADOC) and its training and artistic support programs, the Documentary BeeHive and its pan-African writing residency Agadir Produire au sud co-production, a workshop organised in partnership with the Three Continents Festival (Nantes). In 2018, Falah founded the production company Cinema Salama to extend support to filmmakers at the development, production and post-production stages of their projects.
FIDADOC Documentary BeeHive, FESPACO Yennenga workshops / La Ruche documentaire, Ateliers Yennenga
January, March and July 2020 – High Atlas, Morocco
Feedback on editing, post-production funds and international distributors (festivals, broadcast)