Rabah Ameur-Zaïmeche

Rabah Ameur-Zaïmeche – Bled Number One (2006)

SYNOPSIS
The word bled in Bled Number One, the title of Rabah Ameur-Zaimeche’s follow-up to his well-regarded debut Wesh-Wesh (What’s Going On?) in 2001, translates roughly as Hicksville. Which is precisely where Kamel ends up after being deported from France to Algeria, the land of his fathers, after doing time for robbery.

Bled is a finely observed slice of life shot in a low-key semi-documentary style. The latest in a run of French-made movies dealing with Franco-Algerian cross-currents, it speaks volumes about the conditions of life in today’s Algeria and should play well in festivals and in the Arabic-speaking world. Read More »

Rabah Ameur-Zaïmeche – Dernier maquis (2008)

Au fond d’une zone industrielle à l’agonie, Mao, un patron musulman, possède une entreprise de réparation de palettes et un garage de poids-lourds. Il décide d’ouvrir une mosquée et désigne sans aucune concertation l’imam…

Rabah Ameur-Zaïmeche has a way of framing shots that can make an industrial landscape look like an art project. The dominant images in Dernier Maquis are of rows of carefully stacked red pallets towering in a truck yard located on the outskirts of Paris, where most of the film takes place. Under the direction of Ameur-Zaïmeche, these unaesthetic objects become fascinating to contemplate. Since his visual approach exhibits so strong a sense of control, it is fitting that he cast himself as the company boss. The yard workers call the boss “Mao,” as his leadership style feigns benevolence to keep them from organizing for better wages. Read More »