Bent Keltoum (2001)

Genres - Drama  |   Sub-Genres - Adventure Drama  |   Run Time - 101 min.  |   Countries - Belgium, France  |  
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Mehdi Charef directs this gritty drama about the difficulties of being a women in the strict patriarchal societies of Northern Africa. The film centers on Rallia, abandoned by her mother as a baby and raised by a foster family in Switzerland, who is returning to her birth village for the first time to look for her mother. There she learns from her grandfather that her mother, Keltoum, works in a hotel in the city, returning to the village on Fridays. Rallia soon sheds her western designer clothes for traditional garb and helps her mad-crazed aunt with her chores. When Friday roles around, her mother fails to show up. Rallia and her aunt venture to the city to find her. Along the way, Rallia witnesses some brutal local customs that she has a hard time reconciling with her Western upbringing. . This film was screened at the 2001 Toronto Film Festival.

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Keywords

Algeria, aunt, Berber, cultural-traditions, extended-family, foster-family, journey, mother, search, Swiss [nationality], tribe, women's-issues