Ali Zaoua, Prince de la Rue (Morocco: 2000)

Director

Nabil Ayouch

Cast list

Mounïm Kbab... Kwita
Mustapha Hansali... Omar
Hicham Moussoune... Boubker
Abdelhak Zhayra... Ali Zaoua
Saïd Taghmaoui... Dib
Amal Ayouch... Ali Zaoua’s mother
Mohamed Majd... The fisherman
Hicham Ibrahimi... The sailor
Nadia Ould Hajjaj... Schoolgirl
Abdelkader Lofti... Hardware store owner
Khalil Essaadi... Khalid
Abdessamad Tourab Seddam... Noureddine
Ahmed Lahlil... Man in bar
Karim Merzak... The marabout’s son
Halima Frizi... Old woman
Khalid Ghanimi... Shita
Mohamed Ajmil... Barrito
Mohamed Ezzanati... Nemss
Tarik El Hichou... Chino
Jalila Boulhimez... Journalist
Youssef Semane... Martyr child
Mohamed Gourari... Kitchen child
Noureddine Jori... Lookout child
Abdel Ali Abrouk... Wounded child
Bouchaïb Anouar... Beggar child
Mustapha Samit... Taxi driver
Saïd El Haymer... Bouncer
Chouaïb El Haymer... Bouncer
Ahmed Naim... High school girl’s father
Meriame Raiss... High school girl’s friend
Ftah Bouchaib... Adolescent
Mohamed Ammor... Policeman
Hakim Behlalia... Policeman
Najat M’Jid... Driver at lights
Mourad Kamil... Driver at lights
Brahim Boukhabrine... Hardware store customer
Abdelilah Ammor... Watchman
Mustapha Nassbi... Watchman
Mustapha Walahyane... Watchman

Credits

Writers:

Nabil Ayouch
Nathalie Saugeon

Producers:

Nabil Ayouch (associate producer)
Etienne Comar
Jean Cottin
Martine Lambrechts (associate producer)
Antoine Voituriez

Cinematography:

Renaat Lambeets
Vincent Mathias

Film Editing: Jean-Robert Thomann

Casting: Fayçal Boughrine

Art Direction: Saïd Raïs

Set Decoration:

Abdelhadi Chay
Rachid Rais

Camera and Electrical Department:

Renaat Lambeets (steadicam operator/camera operator)
Ludovic Simeon (second assistant camera)

Music Department:

Edouard Dubois (music consultant)
Stéphane Reichart (music scoring mixer)

Other Crew:

Céline Breuil-Japy (script supervisor)
Charlotte Corrigan (production assistant)

Synopsis

Ali Zaoua, Omar, Boubker, and Kouka, four homeless boys living in Casablanca, break away from their gang of young criminals lead by a man named Dib. Led by Ali Zaoua, the four boys commit small crimes in order to survive on the streets. Ali decides that he is going to become a cabin boy on a ship in order to begin a better life. However, Ali is killed by Dib’s gang before he is able to leave. Omar, Boubker, and Kouka pledge to give their friend a burial fit for royalty and hide Ali’s body from Dib and his young criminals. The three boys find meaning and peace as they jointly search for a means to give their good friend a proper burial.

Reviews

David Jays, “Ali Zaoua.” Sight & Sound (British film magazine)

Dave Kehr, “FILM REVIEW; Living, Thieving and Dying on Casablanca's Mean Streets.” The New York Times (online newspaper)

The Language Shop, “Film Review – Ali Zaoua: Prince of the Streets (2000).” The Language Shop (blog)

Academic Writing:

Sufi Mysticism and Dreams in Nabil Ayouch’s Ali Zaoua, Prince of the Streets by Christa Jones. Jeunesse: Young People, Texts, Cultures, Vol. 5, No. 2 (Winter 2013), pp. 80-95.

Ali Zaoua, Prince of the Streets: The Harsh Life of Street Children and the Poetics of Childhood by Josef Gugler. Film in the Middle East and North Africa: Creative Dissidence (2011), pp. 339-348.

African Films in the Classroom by Josef Gugler. African Studies Review, Vol. 53, No. 3 (December 2010), pp. 1-17.