Samia is the sixth of eight children in a French Algerian family living in the outskirts of Marseille. Within their cramped apartment, you might think you were still in Algeria. Outside, though, there are all the pressures and temptations of modern France; temptations Samia's brothers are watchful that she resists. The film immerses us in a subculture that's hardly over-exposed in French cinema. The perspective is non-judgmental but sympathetic to the teenage girl; in this strictly patriarchal world a trip to the beach with some boys can seem quite momentous. The ending is abrupt - you wonder if they ran out of film stock - but it's a warm, subtle film. (From the novel Ils disent que je suis une beurette by Soraya Nini.) TCh.