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Mektoub. My Love: Canto uno

Abdellatif Kechiche
France, Italy 2017 / 175’
Grass Readers

Abdellatif Kechiche's first film since the acclaimed Blue Is the Warmest Color.The French director of Tunisian descent remains faithful to his thematic obsessions. In Mektoub, he once again tells a story about the triumphs and anguish of adolescence. All of these extreme emotions can be found in Amina, a teenager of Arab descent who is spending a hot summer on the Côte d'Azur. As the boy dreams of becoming a writer, his story can be seen as a thoroughly original variation on the archetypal tale of the birth of the artist. As befits the director of Blue Is the Warmest Color, his latest work is not just an intellectual undertaking; it is also about the pure sensuality that flows through scenes of eating, dancing and sex. The director's wont of celebrating young, scantily clad bodies annoyed some critics and made the premiere of Mektoub one ofthe most controversial events at last year's Venice Festival. Those publicists who were sympathetic to the French director saw the accusations of his use of nudity as a shock tactic as superficial and insisted that people pay attention to the film's nostalgic charm. Since Mektoub is set more than 20 years in the past and the soundtrack is dominated by hits from that era, it's easy to see Kechiche's work as yet another expression of longing for the late, great nineties.

Piotr Czerkawski

awards

Venice IFF 2017- Mouse d'Oro Award

Abdellatif Kechiche

Abdellatif Kechiche was born in Tunis in 1960. When he was six years old, he emigrated along with his entire family to France, where they settled in Nice. He took his first steps in show business as an actor, appearing in André Téchiné's Les Innocents, among other roles. Since the beginning of this century, however, he has mainly been involved in directing. His debut film, Poetical Refugee (2000),was an award winner at the Venice Festival. The controversial Blue Is the Warmest Color (2013) brought him the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Festival.

Selected filmography

2000 Wina Woltera / La Faute a Voltaire / Blame It on Voltaire

2003 Unik / L'Esquive / Games of Love and Chance

2007 Sekret ziarna / La Graine et le mullet / The Secret of the Grain

2013 Życie Adeli / La Vie d'Adèle / Blue Is the Warmest Color

Cast & Crew

director Abdellatif Kechiche
screenplay Abdellatif Kechiche, Ghalia Lacroix
cinematography Marco Graziaplena
editing Nathanaëlle Gerbeaux, Maria Giménez Cavallo
music Jean-Paul Hurier
cast Shaïn Boumedine, Ophélie Bau, Salim Kechiouche
producer Abdellatif Kechiche, Ardavan Safaee, Jérôme Seydoux
production Quat'sous Films
sales Festival Agency
language French
colouration colour