Aïcha wants to put the past behind her and devote herself to a new life as a
married woman. Accompanied by her father and a neighbor, she sets out on a
journey to her new family on the other side of the country.
Dahman is a doctor and he, too, hopes to start a new chapter in his life. He
wants to marry his cousin and is waiting patiently for the promotion which will
allow him to attain a new level of social status.
All three will have to face the consequences of a choice made in the recent
In the 1990s Algeria went through an unprecedented civil war. For ten years
there was conflict between armed groups and the military. The fighting left
200,000 dead, and tens of thousands displaced from their homes in high-risk
zones. In addition the country’s economy, already strained by the sharp drop in
oil prices, collapsed completely.
This grim situation lasted to the onset of the 2000s, but for us the new
decade brought with it hopes of change. Could we get over this national tragedy?
We decided to believe we could - having seen death close up, we were going to
cling to life. We wanted to work, sow the seed and reap the harvest, laugh and
I thought it would be enough for us to love life, for it to love us, too. The
years 2000-2010 saw oil prices reach all-time highs. Consumer goods were
imported in record quantities and Algerians discovered the pleasures of shopping
and mass consumption. Despite financial prosperity and a previously unknown
standard of living, however, another kind of distress persists unchanged – the
kind that lingers on forever, never learning from the mistakes of the past. We
are caught up all too quickly in the new delights discovered despite (or because
of) globalization, and so we gorge unstintingly on anything that can make us
forget the traumas of the recent past.
This is the background against which the stories in my film play out. First
and foremost they are social stories, about ordinary people living ordinary
lives. The screenplay develops a series of portraits of men and women coming to
terms with everyday life and the recent history of Algeria. It brings to the
screen people’s aspirations for a better life (through their desire, will and
strategy), set against the actual accomplishment of such aspirations. The idea
is to allow the viewer to glimpse the kind of social stalemate that can result
from a purely functional system and from self-contradictory thinking. At the
same time, the intention is to portray the relations between men and women,
their individual places within society, and to single out their responsibilities
in building modern Algerian society and working towards changing it for the
My characters are at a turning point in their personal
lives, yet they are not and do not want to be actors for change.
Production company profile
Taj Intaj is a film production and distribution company based in Algiers. Set
up by Adila Bendimerad in 2011, its mission is to support, assist and develop
film projects from young talents. Its current main project is En attendant les
hirondelles, a full-length fiction feature being developed with director Karim
Born in 1976 in Jijel, Algeria, Karim Moussaoui became a film programmer in
Algiers. For a number of years he worked as an assistant for directors such as
Tariq Teguia and Nadir Moknache. In 2013 he made Les Jours d’avant and he is now
working on En attendant les hirondelles, a full-length fiction feature currently
at the development stage.
Petit déjeuner (2003)Ce qu’on doit faire (2006)Les Jours d’avant