After Fatma, aged 17, is assaulted by her cousin, off-camera in the opening scenes, writer/director Ghorbal explores the implications of rape in modern Tunisian society. Pressured into angry silence, Fatma (Jendoubi) goes on to study at Tunis University (not without a struggle) and then teaches in a village primary school, where she meets a young doctor. Their marriage is to prove her entrance into the educated middle-classes. Ghorbal places emphasis on modernity and liberality to highlight the universal pertinence of this deep, often hidden social problem, ably dramatising the selfishness and self-serving which sexism allows. Though the script is schematic, the performances and direction are lucid, balanced and effective.
Cast and crew