For My Country - Pour la France
Q&A with Rachid Hami on March 9
After French-Algerian military recruit Aïssa (Shaïn Boumedine) dies while being hazed, older brother Ismaël (Karim Leklou) and his family converge upon the military academy to bury him and demand answers about how this tragedy occurred. Drawing upon his own family history, Rachid Hami (Orchestra Class, Rendez-Vous 2018) bravely fictionalizes the story of his brother’s death, elegantly flashing back from the present to an often contentious, globe-trotting sibling relationship during their adolescence in 1990s Algeria and time spent together in late-aughts Taipei. Integration, faith, and the sometimes difficult bonds of brotherhood are interrogated by Hami in this elegant and mournful film, which centers its finely drawn characters and their complex humanity over simple political messaging.