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NHNew Horizons / Afaq Jadida Competition

Rough Hands

Rough Hands

Original Title: Ayadin Khashina
Director: Mohamed Asli
Morocco | Arabic
2011 | 97min. | Unknown
Subtitles: English
Format: 35mm
All Ages
Mustafa is a 40-year-old barber in Casablanca whose clients are retired high-ranking government officials, former cabinet ministers and power brokers in Morocco. He uses this privileged access to run an underground business of “facilitating” government paperwork. While his business thrives, Mustafa does not know his assistant is being paid to monitor his illicit dealings.

Zakia, Mustafa’s next-door neighbor, is a 30-year-old school teacher whose fiancé has emigrated to Spain. She is desperate to join him, but obtaining a visa is impossible. Then she learns that strawberry-picking season in Spain is imminent and a company is hiring Moroccan women to do the work. The women have to be married with children and, most importantly, have rough hands. Zakia asks Mustafa to forge her papers, and enlists her mother to concoct a cream to spoil her skin. Their scheme is set in motion, but another destiny seems written in the stars for Zakia and Mustafa….

At the heart of Rough Hands, Mohamed Asli’s second feature after his critically acclaimed debut In Casablanca, Angels Don’t Fly, is a bold indictment of the society that is produced by a corrupt police state and how abuse of the system pervades everyday life. Asli’s lead characters are neither thugs with a heart nor innocent victims: They are at once guilty and compelling, poor folk who bend the system in the pursuit of mundane aspirations – or simply to secure a living.

–Rasha Salti

Director,  Mohamed Asli

Director,  Mohamed Asli

Mohamed Asli was born in Casablanca, and studied film at the Milan School of Cinema. He worked as a cinematographer on Italian television before producing a number of features, including Shaka Zulu (William C. Faure, 1987), Mashamal (Paolo Fondato, 1998) and Last-Minute Marocco (Francesco Falaschi, 2007). His feature directorial debut was In Casablanca, Angels Don’t Fly (2004). Rough Hands (2011) is his second feature.

Cast and Crew

Director
Mohamed Asli
Cast
Mohamed Bastaoui, Houda Rihani, Abdessamad Mifta Lkhair, Amina Rachid
Production Company
Dagham Film
Music
Stephan Micus, Saro Cosentino
Producer
Mohammad Asli
Executive Producer
Noureddine Douguena
Screenwriter
Mohammad Asli
Editor
Raimondo Aiello
Cinematographer
Giovanni Battista Maras
Art Director
Mohamed Bouhfid
Sound
Karym Ronda
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