Moumen Smihi – Si Moh, pas de chance AKA Simoh, the Unlucky Man (1971)

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Shot in Paris after Smihi completed film school, Si Moh is an investigation of the life of migrant workers in France. Connected back to the Maghreb by postcards and to his fellow migrants by shared experiences of alienation, the character Simoh negotiates the industrialized suburbs of Paris as the subject of Smihi’s intimate camera. Continue reading

Moumen Smihi – Chroniques marocaines AKA Moroccan Chronicles (1999)

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In Moroccan Chronicles, set in the ancient city of Fez, a working class mother, abandoned by her husband who has emigrated to Europe, tells three tales to her just-circumcised ten-year-old son. In the first, Smihi re-stages the Marrakech market scene from Hitchcock’s The Man Who Knew Too Much, in which a monkey trainer makes children dance for tourists. In the second, two lovers meet on the ramparts of Orson Welles’s Essaouira locations for Othello and speak of their own forbidden love. And in the third, set in Smihi’s home town of Tangier, an old sailor dreams of vanquishing a sea monster: the Gibraltar ferry that connects Europe to Africa. Continue reading