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2013 | 2005

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Toronto Film Review: ‘Rock the Casbah’

16 September 2013 3:49 PM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Despite the familiarity of its tale about recriminations, revelations and reconciliations during a family gathering for a funeral, “Rock the Casbah” is consistently engaging and frequently amusing, largely due to the vivid performances by a strong cast, fleet pacing by writer-director Laila Marrakchi (“Marock”), and some sharp observations about the role of women in an upper-class milieu torn between Muslim traditions and Western influences. This attractively mounted French-Moroccan co-production should travel widely on the global fest circuit, and possibly attract simpatico femme ticketbuyers in far-flung international markets.

Omar Sharif — who’s appropriately acknowledged in the credits for his “exceptional participation” — suggests a tone of magical realism during the pic’s opening minutes, as he playfully introduces himself to the audience as Moulay Hassan, a recently deceased industrialist who’s eagerly awaiting the gathering of his clan for three days of mourning at his palatial villa in Tangiers. With a beaming smile and a courtly stride, »

- Joe Leydon

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2013 | 2005

1 item from 2013


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