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Erige Sehiri Under The Fig Trees Film Movement

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Film Movement Shares a Ride with Erige Sehiri’s “Under The Fig Trees”

Film Movement Shares a Ride with Erige Sehiri’s “Under The Fig Trees”

A small gem from this year’s Director’s Fortnight has been gaining a lot of traction with film festival wins, certification as Tunisia’s Oscar submission and now the folks at Film Movement have landed the drama that takes place under trees, through branches and offers seedlings of change and hope. Docu-helmer Erige Sehiri‘s Under The Fig Trees features an ensemble (non-professional actors) with faces you aren’t likely to forget (a pair of charming sisters are prominently featured here) will according to Variety will roll out to theaters in 2023. In our Cannes review we noted that “while this is not as critical as Mounia Meddour’s (Papicha) similar reflections found in neighboring contemporary Algeria, there are nonetheless face-value elements that make this a simplistic, breezy watch that is ripe for bigger discussions.”

Set over the course of a summer day in northwest Tunisia, the film follows Melek and her friends who work in the orchards to pay for their studies, prepare for their weddings or help their families. Yet, between the fig trees, they steal away from work to catch up, gossip, squabble, and flirt. Each encounter between the workers on the cusp of adulthood is ripe with discovery and connection.

Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist and critic at (founded in 2000). Eric is a regular at Sundance, Cannes and TIFF. He has a BFA in Film Studies at the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013 he served as a Narrative Competition Jury Member at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson's This Teacher (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022 he served as a New Flesh Comp for Best First Feature at the 2022 Fantasia Intl. Film Festival. Current top films for 2022 include Tár (Todd Field), All That Breathes (Shaunak Sen), Aftersun (Charlotte Wells).

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