Asli first sets eyes on Saeed in the mid-1990s at a fairground as he is anxiously stepping off a merry-go-round just before the ride begins. They get to know each other while spinning bottles at a party in their student hall of residence. Asli is fascinated by Saeed’s charisma and self-confidence. The two students marry secretly even though Asli’s mother is against the relationship. In a mosque in Hamburg, they promise to stay together and keep each other’s secrets. Caught between asserting herself, conforming to her traditional parental home and her self-sacrificing love, Asli tries to find her own way in life. Then Saeed disappears. His decision changes Asli’s life – before it shakes the whole world.
Anne Zohra Berrached’s film comprises several layers that are all of equal importance. It is a love story, but it is also an exploration of cultural differences, truth and faith, trust and delusion. After Two Mothers and 24 Weeks, the director once again demonstrates her particular ability to reveal the private lives that exist behind the politics, as well as her great sensitivity when working with actors.
Director Anne Zohra Berrached
DCP, 118 min.