drama, world | NR | 2hr 09min
Opening at GFC: 05/03/2017
While this uncompromising look at the lives of four high-end prostitutes in present-day Marrakesh unleashed a storm of controversy following its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival and was eventually banned in its native Morocco, MUCH LOVED’S extraordinarily frank approach to sexuality and women’s discourse about men is anything but empty provocation. Writer-director Nabil Ayouch goes after a far more uncomfortable truth here: the condition of women in oppressive patriarchal societies that deny them “respectable” means to care for themselves and their families. With a non-sensational, empathetic gaze, the film shows us everything Moroccan fundamentalists and power brokers would prefer to ignore: call girls partying with rich Saudis, transvestites and children walking the street, corrupt police officers, families without resources. Though its subject matter is as dispiriting as it is infuriating, MUCH LOVED is ultimately uplifting. By being true to the details and constantly hitting the right note, Ayouch and his non-professional actresses have crafted unforgettable portraits of women pursuing a dream of independence.
WHEN YOU HEAR THE BELLS - Afghanistan. Saman is a “batcha”, a young male prostitute who lives under the protection of Farroukhzad. Saman starts worrying when he sees the new recruit of his master, a young boy who has been chosen to replace him.
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