A child throws stones at the moon. They say the sun has gone and will only return when anxiety has disappeared. Until then, the stars are there to offer comfort. So the child counts the stars in the night’s endless expanse on the slopes of the Algerian Atlas mountains. Aness, the child, is the companion of Lamine, a young man on the run. Both are being pursued by nameless people carrying arms. Who are these criminals? Why must the two of them hide and sleep at night with weapons in their hands? Is the child merely a figment of Lamine’s imagination? A desire made flesh? Narrated elliptically and associatively, La nuit et l’enfant tells of omnipresent danger and constant threats. The film moves between realism and dream: Almost documentary-like shots alternate with powerful, poetic imagery. In the 90s, the Djelfa region was a terrorist stronghold. Lamine says that life was different before the terrorists came. Without dogma and with plenty of room for interpretation, this film is the account of a young generation’s will to live, a generation which must set boundaries even as it suffers. David Yon has created a dark, atmospheric fable reminiscent of the story of another little prince.
by David Yon
with Lamine Bachar, Aness Baitich
France / Qatar 2015