BASTARDO

By Nejib BELKADHI

PROPAGANDA PRODUCTION - as PROD

Drama - Completed 2013


Festivals
& Awards

Toronto - TIFF 2013
Contemporary World Cinema
    • Year of production
    • 2013
    • Genres
    • Drama
    • Countries
    • TUNISIA
    • Languages
    • TUNISIAN
    • Budget
    • 1 - 3 M$
    • Duration
    • 90 mn
    • Director(s)
    • Nejib BELKADHI
    • Writer(s)
    • Nejib BELKADHI
    • Producer(s)
    • Imed MARZOUK (PROPAGANDA PRODUCTIONS), Fares LADJIMI (1001 Productions)
    • Synopsis
    • It’s the story of Mohsen the bastard, whose origins and history are unknown. He was found thirty years earlier by Am Salah, his adoptive father, in a dustbin. He‘s always been excluded and rejected by the inhabitants of the rundown district where he lives.
      After he’s been fired from his job, Mohsen, in cahoots with his friend Khlifa, has a GSM relay installed on his roof for a substantial monthly payment. The aerial will allow the inhabitants of the district to have access to cellular telephony, which up until then they’d been deprived of.
      This event will disrupt the lives of the inhabitants, and more so Mohsen’s, whose financial situation and social life will improve day by day.
      From then on, Mohsen will be the object of all the attention, his social rise is dazzling, and his new status starts to disrupt the established order. Indeed, Larnouba a local thug and gang leader of the district, who lives off the racketeering of the inhabitants, doesn’t see Mohsen’s rise in a favourable light, as he will gradually be eclipsed from the limelight.
      However, the inhabitants of the district are overwhelmed by the technology and consumerism brought on by the arrival of cellular telephony: new traffics appear and the morals gradually change. Only Bent Essengra, secretly in love Mohsen, and regarded as the local maniac, isn’t taken by the excitement, and will observe the district with lucidity.
      As for Mohsen, his sudden rise in the world is a dream come true: the opportunity to be acknowledged and respected in the district, and have his beloved (his adoptive father, his cat) benefit from his new situation.
      But Mohsen has another dream: to reach Morjana, the girl who was the cause of his dismissal. A profiteer who got rich stealing shoes in the factory, where Mohsen was a night watchman; He covered up for her through love.
      Mohsen will do everything he can to reach the woman, a sort of spectre he will never get hold of, an entity he reveres without ever having spoken to her. Thinking that his rise will enable him to reach her, Mohsen will ingenuously pursue her, but to no avail; it will gradually dehumanise him.
      As the days go by, Moshen’s rise will become a heavier burden to bear. The waves emitted by the GSM relay, the source of his power, will gradually start to crush him on the inside, and make him lose touch with reality. His physical and mental state are affected.
      Mohsen’s sole confidant is Khlifa’s ghost, his friend and partner killed by Larnouba, the district gang leader, and who was at the origin of the installation of the relay. Khlifa becomes Mohsen’s bad conscience, and incites him to earn more money and gain power, even if it means taking Larnouba’s place, who is now in jail.
      .
      Mohsen deteriorates and turns into a monster blinded by greed, cupidity and the love of money. His life gradually breaks down, he is ravaged by the GSM relay. He becomes alienated, he’s become a lifeless and soulless being.
      Larnouba comes out of jail, intent on avenging his honour and regaining his status as gang leader, but that’s without taking into account the GSM relay which has gradually destroyed Mohsen.
    • Partners & financing
    • Fonds Sud
      Ministère de la culture (Tunisia)
      Doha Film Institute
    • Beginning of shooting
    • Dec 01, 2011
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