In Casablanca Angels Don’t Fly

aka A CASABLANCA LES ANGES NE VOLENT PAS
Movie Review by EDF

Starring: Abdessamed Miftah el Kheir, Abderrazak el Badaoui, Rachid el Hazmir
Director: Mohamed Asli

In a world where men have to go to work to put food on the table, in Morocco the harsh realism is that rural villages are populated by women and children who are detached from their men working in Casablanca. Life is tough as the women feel that they have been made widows and their children orphans by a city they hope they will never see.

The story follows three such men who work together in a restaurant. Said (Rachid El Hazmir) who has left behind a pregnant wife, Ismail (Abdessamed Miftah El Kheir) who believes his life will be transformed once he buys a pair of Chelsea boots and Ottman (Abdelaziz Essghyr) whose mother is about to sell off his prized stallion to pay off their mounting debts. Situations take a turn for the worst as Said’s wife becomes ill, Ismail’s boots have been sold and Ottman’s mother has found a buyer for the stallion, the local butcher.

At times this debut from director Mohamed Asli feels like a travelogue as the various characters travel from one place to another through a bustling, vibrant Casablanca filled with the sound of car horns and markets. This is in complete contrast to the stark countryside, hit by drought and where the barren land swallows up any signs of hope. This only confirms the fact that life is tough wherever you go and even those who achieve their dream are not guaranteed happiness.

3 out of 6 stars

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