Imagine - Dachra
Abdelhamid Bouchnak / TN, 2018 / 113 min.
Film students follow the story of an alleged witch, in Tunisian horror that uses its Arab cultural roots to provide scares and shocks.
Three film students make a documentary about a woman found twenty years prior on the side of the road with her body mutilated and throat cut open, believed to be a witch. An encounter leads them to a secluded village run by silent women with a suspicious affinity for meat. Vibrant Tunisian horror uses its Arab cultural roots to provide scares and shocks.
Dachra, the first horror film to come out of Tunisia and a big local success, may share its premise with The Blair Witch Project, its execution is entirely different, with careful framing and avoidance of the overused POV. Almost every element of the film - the witches, cannibalism and dream sequences - have a distinct Arab flavour, making the familiar completely uncanny. The film sheds a different light on superstition in the Muslim world and has a fearless and independent woman at its centre. It”s fresh, engaging and vibrant, and its scares mostly come from the atmosphere, the characters and the inevitability of evil.
13 April with introduction by Adel Salem