23 Jan 2010

Un Prophete (A Prophet)

Director: Jacques Audiard

Cast: Tahar Rahim, Niels Arestrup, Adel Bencherif

Year: 2009

Genre: Crime / Drama


Cinema-Reader – 8.2

IMDB – 8.2

FilmAffinity – 7.5

(click picture for Trailer)

Cinema-Reader Synopsis:

Tale about the life of Malik El Djebena (Tahar Rahim); a 19-year-old that ends up discovering how though and hopeless can be life locked down in a prison of Paris. Forced by Corsican mafia within the prison to murder a rival leader of a Muslim clan, Malik gets trapped in drugs smuggling, rivalry rows among Italians that have adopted him as a member of the clan and Muslim, which has been his identity on his life so far.

Once sides have been chosen, Malik starts building up his own side from the shadow determined to get a profit from where people just can distinguish racial clashes and hierarchical established order.

Cinema-Reader Review:

What has been considered the modern version of a classy gansta movie that set the standard of the genre decades ago (De Palma’s Scarface), this French production is a new proof of how European cinema is able to produce a wide range of film further than the stereotype set by American industry about what is the cinema made onto the old continent: sex, inner cinema and spaghetti western.

Nominated for the Golden Globe for best foreign language production, prize stolen by german The White Ribbon, this year in which all nominees were Europe production in a sign that could foresee what is about to happen in the incoming Oscar Ceremony Awards.

European cinema has become a really good manufacturer of good movies and even greater stories in the last years in which many critics consider as the new European Golden Era.

Prolific and high quality films has shown up from European soil in recent years, such as Romanzo Criminale, Gomorra, La Vita e Bella and Manuale d’amore (Italy), Laberinto del Fauno, Mar Adentro and (according to some leaving me out completely) Almodovar’s (Spain); Der Untergang, The White Ribbon, Goodbye Lenin and The Life of Others (Germany), Amelie Poulain and Le diner de Cons (France) or Let the Right One In (Norway).

Besides that I do agree that this is one of the movies of the year just gone, can be a bit hasty saying this is the heir of a film with superb moments within film history such memorable shots as Pacino’s bliss when being about to get done.

Although the plot is a bit disjoint in some part of the movie, the whole story along with a breathtaking performance achieved by Tahar Rahim make it completely disappear, evoking the viewer in a fully enjoyment of a movie that will remain as one of the greatest European production in the decade that just came to an end.

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