You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Hold Back

Imagine visuals from a less disciplined, zero-budget episode of "The Office," and the look of Rachid Djaidani's "Hold Back" becomes clear.

With:
With: Slimane Dazi, Sabrina Hamida, Stephane Soo Mongo.

Imagine visuals from a less disciplined, zero-budget episode of “The Office,” and the look of Rachid Djaidani’s “Hold Back” becomes clear. Renaissance man Djaidani (boxer, novelist, thesp, helmer) took a great subject — a French-Algerian woman wants to marry a black man, to the horror of her 40 brothers — and tried to put the pieces together after nine years and 200 hours of footage. The effort defeats him. Despite moments of humor, this unruly tyro effort exhibits all the signs of an unformed talent with hipster pretentions, reducing non-Gallic exposure to freshman-oriented fests.

When Slimane (Slimane Dazi) learns sis Sabrina (Sabrina Hamida) is tying the knot with Dorcy (Stephane Soo Mongo), an actor of sub-Saharan descent, he traverses Paris to alert their 40 brothers of the need to stop this tradition-busting affair. Most are up in arms over the perceived scandal of Arab-black miscegenation (rarely addressed in cinema), blithely revealing their predictably hypocritical attitudes. Queasily shifting lensing and hyper editing have difficulty finding anything to settle on, and extreme closeups are an empty, retro exercise in style. Subtitles on the Cannes print give the title its literal musical translation, “Refrain.”

Hold Back

France

Production: An Or production with the participation of Arte France Cinema. Produced by Rachid Djaidani. Directed, written by Rachid Djaidani.

Crew: Camera (color, DV), Djaidani, Karim El Dib, Julien Boeuf, Elamine Oumara; editors, Djaidani, Svetlana Vaynblat, Boeuf, El Dib; music, Steve Arguelles. Reviewed at Cannes Film Festival (Directors' Fortnight), May 21, 2012. Running time: 78 MIN.

With: With: Slimane Dazi, Sabrina Hamida, Stephane Soo Mongo.

More Film

  • Oscar-Nominated Film Editor Edward Abroms Dies

    Oscar-Nominated Film Editor Edward Abroms Dies at 82

    Imagine visuals from a less disciplined, zero-budget episode of “The Office,” and the look of Rachid Djaidani’s “Hold Back” becomes clear. Renaissance man Djaidani (boxer, novelist, thesp, helmer) took a great subject — a French-Algerian woman wants to marry a black man, to the horror of her 40 brothers — and tried to put the […]

  • Sam Rockwell

    Film News Roundup: Sam Rockwell to Voice Gorilla in Angelina Jolie's 'One and Only Ivan'

    Imagine visuals from a less disciplined, zero-budget episode of “The Office,” and the look of Rachid Djaidani’s “Hold Back” becomes clear. Renaissance man Djaidani (boxer, novelist, thesp, helmer) took a great subject — a French-Algerian woman wants to marry a black man, to the horror of her 40 brothers — and tried to put the […]

  • Meryl Streep Harvey Weinstein Jennifer Lawrence

    Harvey Weinstein Apologizes for Citing Meryl Streep, Jennifer Lawrence in Legal Defense

    Imagine visuals from a less disciplined, zero-budget episode of “The Office,” and the look of Rachid Djaidani’s “Hold Back” becomes clear. Renaissance man Djaidani (boxer, novelist, thesp, helmer) took a great subject — a French-Algerian woman wants to marry a black man, to the horror of her 40 brothers — and tried to put the […]

  • Berlin 2018 Review: Sunday's Illness

    Berlin Film Review: 'Sunday's Illness'

    Imagine visuals from a less disciplined, zero-budget episode of “The Office,” and the look of Rachid Djaidani’s “Hold Back” becomes clear. Renaissance man Djaidani (boxer, novelist, thesp, helmer) took a great subject — a French-Algerian woman wants to marry a black man, to the horror of her 40 brothers — and tried to put the […]

  • Goosebumps Sequel Cast

    'Goosebumps' Sequel Sets Ensemble Cast

    Imagine visuals from a less disciplined, zero-budget episode of “The Office,” and the look of Rachid Djaidani’s “Hold Back” becomes clear. Renaissance man Djaidani (boxer, novelist, thesp, helmer) took a great subject — a French-Algerian woman wants to marry a black man, to the horror of her 40 brothers — and tried to put the […]

  • Jodie Foster Sterling K Brown

    Jodie Foster-Sterling K. Brown's 'Hotel Artemis' Gets Distribution

    Imagine visuals from a less disciplined, zero-budget episode of “The Office,” and the look of Rachid Djaidani’s “Hold Back” becomes clear. Renaissance man Djaidani (boxer, novelist, thesp, helmer) took a great subject — a French-Algerian woman wants to marry a black man, to the horror of her 40 brothers — and tried to put the […]

  • Alexandre Desplat

    Will Alexandre Desplat Take Home Another Oscar? A History of Score Wins

    Imagine visuals from a less disciplined, zero-budget episode of “The Office,” and the look of Rachid Djaidani’s “Hold Back” becomes clear. Renaissance man Djaidani (boxer, novelist, thesp, helmer) took a great subject — a French-Algerian woman wants to marry a black man, to the horror of her 40 brothers — and tried to put the […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content