Tunisia, France, Qatar, 114 min
Hailing from Mohammedia, Tunisia, the film documents twelve years in the life of Mehrez. A gifted dancer and actor, but also irresistibly addicted to gambling and horse races, he struggles on a daily basis with himself and the bewildering contradictions of his country. In his unstoppable quest for truthful emotions, Mehrez defies all rules.
Mehrez is a conspicuous personality in Mohammedia, a small Tunisian town. At 25, he decides to enlighten and challenge his community of unemployed, frustrated youngsters through the means of theatre. He puts his heart and soul and everything else he’s got into his teaching, and his troupe begins to blossom. But suddenly, Mehrez is thrown in jail, and all his plans begin to go awry. Directed by Hamza Ouni (El Gort, VdR 2014), The Disqualified documents twelve years in the life of Mehrez, a wild and uncontainable set of bewildering contradictions. A gifted dancer and actor, but also irresistibly addicted to gambling and horse races, he struggles on a daily basis with himself and the contradictions of his country. In his never satisfied quest for truthful emotions, Mehrez defies all rules and mixes together in a deeply emotional maelstrom his ambitions and frustrations. Like some of Abel Ferrara’s most challenging films, Hamza Ouni presents a character that strives for salvation but dances with unrestrained passion on the brink of the abyss.
Giona A. Nazzaro
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