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You Will Die at Twenty

First director Amjad Abu Alala’s meditative drama is about an existential prophecy in a Sudanese village.

WWithout wanting to sound casual, Amjad Abu Alala’s emotionally torturous debut feature plays out like a classic teenage angst movie, in which a brooding youth becomes obsessed with the prospect of his untimely demise.

Its story does not take place in a gray suburb of the West, but rather in a distant Sudanese village made of glowing sandstone in which our dark hero Muzamil (Mustafa Shehata) must bear the existential weight of a death sentence that has brought him down. uttered when he was just a baby.

The apocalyptic clock applied to this boy’s life is the result of a whirling dervish rocking in a traditional ceremony and then counting to 20 – onlookers assume Mumazil will die by the time he reaches this age.

The film avoids hyperbole in its thoughtful, philosophical exploration of young life struggling with a limited expiration date, wondering if this should be an excuse for exuberance and gorging on life experience, or perhaps sit still and do your best to ward off the incoming curse.

Sometimes it’s a bit too heavy and sometimes struggles to bring variation and surprise to its execution. Yet this meditative, laconic drama reflects on the nature of time and the revelation that while Muzamil’s predicament seems highly improbable to the rational viewer, the knowledge he gains is relevant to all mortals.

Reference of the Article-post – lwlies