Fort des fous (Le)

  • Fort des fous (Le)
Genre : Political
Type : Fiction
Original title :
Principal country concerned : Column : Cinema/tv
Year of production : 2017
Format : Feature
Running time : 144 (in minutes)

Narimane Mari explores the legacy of colonization through a portrait in three acts - filmed in Algeria, on Kythira Island, and in Greece - of the far reaches of imperialism, history, and, ultimately, the dogged work of revolution.

Using archives from the early scientific expeditions and taming campaigns led by the French colonizers in North Africa, Le Fort de fous follows a community of young nomads and wanderers as they form an imagined utopian society in response to imperialistic rule. Reenactments, improvisations, and interviews are conducted with the inhabitants of Algiers, Kythira Island and the Prosfygika community in Athens to describe an alternative temporality and autonomous space, reflecting on the transmission and re-appropriation of history and reviving memories as strategies of resistance.

A film by Narimane MARI

France / Algeria / Switzerland / Germany / Greece / Qatar, 2017, Fiction, 144 minutes, PG, colour, Algerian / French / Greek / English

starring Michel Haas, Rachid Haddad, Thekla Gounaridi, Antoine Morin

After the success of her award-winning first feature, Bloody Beans, filmmaker and producer Narimane Mari continues to explore the legacy of colonization through play with form and performance - and her signature comic touches.
Structured over three acts - and filmed, respectively, in Mari's native Algeria, on Kythira Island, and in the Prosfygika neighbourhood of post-economic-collapse Greece - Le fort des fous shifts tones and temporal spaces to create a contemporary portrait of the far reaches of imperialism, history and, ultimately, the dogged work of revolution. From its luminous opening - a period piece set in colonial-era Algeria where those in power speak in a muddled tongue only they understand - Mari shifts to a documentary-style exploration of a band of utopians who resist imperialist rule by mapping their own relationships to the land.
In the final chapter, Mari breaks from the prior visual beauty and inserts herself into the film as she interviews anarchists and agitators in Greece. These discussions, filmed in stationary single takes in harsh digital, act as a politically charged aesthetic choice that interrogates the role of bearing witness and listening in disrupting the patterns of the past.
Complex and layered, Le fort des fous evokes the presence of colonialist history in the present moment, underlying that, as one interviewee says: "Barbarians exist in the modern world."
KIVA REARDON (TIFF 2017, Toronto)

Global Perspectives, Art + Creativity, Women In Film, NORTH AFRICAN + MIDDLE EASTERN, History, Female Director

Second feature

Executive Producers
Fenia Cossovitsa, Ann Carolin Renninger, Narimane Mari

Narimane Mari, Olivier Boischot

Narimane Mari

Narimane Mari

Narimane Mari, Antonin Boischot

Benjamin Laurent, Ahmed Elshebiny, Vaggelis Zelkas

Narimane Mari, Corentin Doucet

Original Score
Cosmic Neman, Dr Schonberg


Production Designer
Narimane Mari

Michel Haas, Rachid Haddad, Thekla Gounaridi, Antoine Morin

Production Companies
Centrale Électrique /
Blonde /
joon film /
Xenia Films /
Allers retours Films

2017 | TIFF - Toronto International Film Festival, Canada | 7-17 sept 2017
* Selection - Wavelengths
* North American Premiere

2017 | 70e festival de Locarno, Suisse.
* Sélection - Concorso Cineasti
* World Premiere
* Screening: Tuesday 8 | 8 | 2017 · 11:00 · PalaCinema Sala 1 · Sub. English,French
* Screening: Wednesday 9 | 8 | 2017 · 14:00 · L'altra Sala · Sub. English,French
* Screening: Thursday 10 | 8 | 2017 · 23:00 · PalaCinema Sala 2 · Sub. English



A partire dalle immagini di repertorio delle prime spedizioni scientifiche e campagne di addomesticamento condotte dai colonizzatori francesi in Nord Africa, Le Fort des fous segue una comunità di giovani nomadi e vagabondi che fonda una società utopica in risposta al dominio imperialista. Resuscitando la memoria come strategia di resistenza, sono messe in scena ricostruzioni dal vivo, improvvisazioni e interviste con gli abitanti di Algeri, dell'isola di Cerigo e con la comunità ateniese di Prosfygika con l'obiettivo di disegnare una temporalità alternativa e uno spazio autonomo, conducendo una riflessione su come si trasmette e ci si riappropria della storia.

Francia, Qatar, Grecia, Germania, Algeria · 2017 · DCP · Colore · 140' · v.o. algerino/francese/greco/inglese

Narimane Mari

Michel Haas, Rachid Haddad, Thekla Gounaridi, Antoine Morin

Olivier Boischot, Narimane Mari, Fenia Cossovitsa, Ann Carolin Renninger

Los Cousinos

Centrale Electrique

Xenia Film

Joon Film


Allers Retours Films

2017 | 70e festival de Locarno, Suisse.
* Sélection - Concorso Cineasti



Ausgehend von Aufzeichnungen früher wissenschaftlicher Expeditionen und Zähmungskampagnen unter der Führung französischer Kolonialisten in Nordafrika folgt Le Fort de Fous einer Gemeinschaft junger Nomadinnen und Vagabundinnen, die eine imaginierte utopische Gesellschaft als Reaktion auf die imperialistische Herrschaft bilden. Nachgestellte und improvisierte Szenen sowie Interviews, die von und mit Einwohnern von Algier, von der Insel Kythira und aus der Community von Prosfygika in Athen geführt werden, durchziehen diese Arbeit als Momente alternativer Temporalität und autonomer Räume. Sie reflektieren die Übermittlung und Wiederaneignung von Geschichte und beleben als Strategie des Widerstands die Erinnerungen.

Frankreich, Qatar, Griechenland, Deutschland, Algerien · 2017 · DCP · Color · 140' · o.v. Algerian/French/Greek/English

Narimane Mari

Michel Haas, Rachid Haddad, Thekla Gounaridi, Antoine Morin

Olivier Boischot, Narimane Mari, Fenia Cossovitsa, Ann Carolin Renninger

Los Cousinos

Centrale Electrique

Xenia Film

Joon Film


Allers Retours Films


  • Arterial network
  • Media, Sports and Entertainment Group (MSE)
  • Gens de la Caraïbe
  • Groupe 30 Afrique
  • Alliance Française VANUATU
  • Zimbabwe : Culture Fund Of Zimbabwe Trust
  • RDC : Groupe TACCEMS
  • Rwanda : Positive Production
  • Togo : Kadam Kadam
  • Niger : ONG Culture Art Humanité
  • Collectif 2004 Images
  • Africultures Burkina-Faso
  • Bénincultures / Editions Plurielles
  • Africiné
  • Afrilivres

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