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Thousand Months, A

Reviewed By Greg Muskewitz
Posted 02/02/04 02:57:49

"... blurred and fuzzy in the center ..."
3 stars (Just Average)

Overlong by at least 20-minutes, mercifully it doesn’t last as long as the title suggests, nor does it cover that length of time. The title is taken from a prayer, and the Moroccan movie is set during Ramadan in 1981.

It centers on a young boy who lives with his grandfather and mother (who is a servant to the town’s Kaid), while unbeknownst to him, his father is serving time in jail. As an observance of daily rituals (he holds the prestigious position of literally holding the teacher’s chair out of the classroom) and between a handful of local denizens (the Kaid’s rebellious daughter, a nearby looker who is pined after by the teacher and a cable engineer), it achieves an authentically static slice of life. (The engineer’s romantic gesture of cutting off the town’s transmission of a movie so that only his pursuant love interest knows the ending is sweet.) Where Faouzi Bensaďdi’s movie is visually blurred and fuzzy around the edges, his dramatic storytelling is blurred and fuzzy in the center; the act of observing builds in monotony as there is less and less to observe. The action is so limited and decidedly dispersed over a long period of time that it adds up to so little when all has been collected. Fouad Labied, as the little boy, attains a patience charm in the wide-eyed role. With Mohamed Majd and Nezha Rahile.

[See it if you must.]

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