Miloud is a barber in Darb el-Soltane, an old proletarian neighborhood in Casablanca, who struggles to maintain a semblance of dignity. Life has dealt his friend Hmida hard knocks. A countryside boy who moved to the city after his father repudiated him, he turned to petty larceny to survive, for which he served a sentence in prison. Hmida is jobless yet boisterous, while Miloud is skittish and disheartened by his friend’s objectionable activities. When a wealthy entrepreneur who wields power in the neighborhood manages to evict the barber and his wife from the shop to build a centre for Koranic instruction, Hmida incites his friend to fight back. Deemed one of Moroccan cinema’s underrated masterpieces, Hallaq Darb al-Fuqara’ is infused with disarming realist grit. Adapted from a play by Youssef Fadel, a celebrated playwright, novelist and screenwriter who hailed from Darb el-Soltane and was imprisoned for his play “The War”, the film was Mohamed Reggab’s only narrative feature. He incurred so much debt to finance the production that he even spent time in prison.
110 min · Colour · 35 mm
Mohamed HabachiKhadija Khammouli
Born in 1942 in Safi, Morocco. He studied at the École nationale supérieure Louis-Lumière in Paris and at the Russian film school WGIK in Moscow before studying Psychology at the Université libre in Brussels. He made his first and only full-length film, Hallaq Darb al-Fuqara’ in 1982. Mohamed Reggab died in Paris in 1990.Filmography (selection)
1966 Information et la télévision 1969 Histoire en verre; 60 min. 1972 La Séquestration; 60 min. 1976 Les Cendres du clos; 90 min. 1982 Hallaq Darb al-Fuqara’ (The Barber of the Poor District); Berlinale Forum 1984, 110 min.