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Ali Zaoua: Prince of the Streets (2000)

Ali Zaoua, prince de la rue (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, Crime | 25 November 2000 (Morocco)
A group of children living on the street leave their gang, prompting retribution from the gang's leader. After one of the children dies, the rest try to come up with the resources to give their friend a proper burial.


Nabil Ayouch

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21 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Mounïm Kbab Mounïm Kbab ... Kwita
Mustapha Hansali Mustapha Hansali ... Omar
Hicham Moussoune Hicham Moussoune ... Boubker
Abdelhak Zhayra Abdelhak Zhayra ... Ali Zaoua
Saïd Taghmaoui ... Dib
Amal Ayouch Amal Ayouch ... Ali Zaoua's mother
Mohamed Majd Mohamed Majd ... The fisherman
Hicham Ibrahimi Hicham Ibrahimi ... The sailor
Nadia Ould Hajjaj Nadia Ould Hajjaj ... Schoolgirl
Abdelkader Lofti Abdelkader Lofti ... Hardware store owner
Khalil Essaadi Khalil Essaadi ... Khalid
Abdessamad Tourab Seddam Abdessamad Tourab Seddam ... Noureddine
Ahmed Lahlil Ahmed Lahlil ... Man in bar
Karim Merzak Karim Merzak ... The marabout's son
Halima Frizi Halima Frizi ... Old woman


Ali, Kwita, Omar and Boubker are street kids. The daily dose of glue sniffing represents their only escape from reality. Since they left Dib and his gang, they have been living on the portside of Casablanca. They live in constant fear of Dib's revenge. Ali wants to become a sailor - when he was living with his mother, a prostitute, he used to listen to a fairy tale about the sailor who discovered the miracle island with two suns. Instead of finding his island in the dream, Ali and his friends are confronted with Dib's gang. Matters are getting serious. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Crime


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »



Morocco | Tunisia | France | Belgium | USA


Arabic | French

Release Date:

25 November 2000 (Morocco) See more »

Also Known As:

Ali Zaoua: Prince of the Streets See more »

Filming Locations:

Casablanca, Morocco

Company Credits

Production Co:

2M,Ace Editing,Alexis Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| |

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Included among the "1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die", edited by Steven Schneider. See more »


The position of Omar's hands change between shots when he sits next to Noureddine. See more »


References The 400 Blows (1959) See more »

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User Reviews

The most disturbing yet beautiful film ever
11 March 2001 | by HenryMiller01See all my reviews

I recently saw this film at the Santa Barbara international film festival. I glanced over the brief summary, and the fact that it came from Morocco intrigued me. However, it started an hour after a movie I really wanted to see started. The movie I went to wasn't that great and I ended up sneaking out of that one and into Ali Zaoua. I'm now glad I did so because what I saw was one of the most brutally realistic and terrifying, yet beautiful and poetic, inspiring and redemptive movies I've ever seen.

This movie is not for the faint of heart. Since it takes place in the poverty of a third world country, in places where the homeless in America seem spoiled in comparison, this movie portrays the harsh realities these kids endure everyday to survive, whether from the world around them or each other, no matter what the cost. The actors seem casted right off the streets, bearing scars and other physical traces of the nightmares they live through. The fact that the characters are only small children forced to live lives that even an adult would have a difficult time with makes this movie even more powerful.

At times this movie seemed like a version of Lord of the Flies, but I can't go into that any more without potentially spoiling the movie (or Lord of the Flies for those who haven't seen the movie or read the book). All I will say, however, is that the movie doesn't center around what seems to be aspects from Lord of the Flies and has much more good points about it than bad ones, that the movie carries much further than these aspects.

I can't say enough about this movie. I've only seen it one time and now I can't seem to find it on video or DVD. I can only hope that it comes out on DVD and in widescreen format.

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