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The unifying force of a common struggle

Regissør: Nadir Bouhmouch
(Marokko og Qatar)

ACTIVISM: Movement is a lyrical and beautifully filmed piece of political propaganda – with a Moroccan twist.

Nadir Bouhmouch # s Movement is a beautifully filmed poetic walk through the lives of poor Moroccan villagers depicting their defiant opposition to a silver mine that both steals the land from them and poison the earth with cyanide. It all stands as a school example of the many underreported cases in which small communities protest the environmental damage of the wealthy elite – and here Movement on hope and encouragement as well as a host of colorful personalities. But like many others who both write and direct a single film, Bouhmouch is too close to his own material.

Movement on the Road '96

The film begins in the dry, dusty and blown activist camp atop Alebban Mountain – a rocky gorge with panoramic views of an ocher valley and toward distant mountains where "Africa's seventh largest silver mine" hides. In stone cottages, villagers have kept watch here since 2011: Then they closed the crane on the now rusted pipeline that had for many years led the necessary water up to the silver mining operation.

In 2011, the soil in Imider was poisoned by cyanide leaks.

The water source – which is built into a concrete tank – lies within the confines of Imider, a small village down in the valley, where the inhabitants have carved a life. Meanwhile, a fertile little patch of almond trees and barley fields are in a protected corner by the ruins of a French colonial fort. The village experienced that the wells ran out of water after the mid-80s began intense pumping activity for the silver mines.

The first round of protests started in 1996, and it is from there that the village activists have taken the name of the movement: Movement. . .

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Nick Holdsworth
Holdsworth is a writer, journalist and filmmaker.

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