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by Mohamed El Aboudi


In the vast expanse of desert East of Atlas Mountains in Morocco, seasonal rain and snow once supported livestock, but now the drought seems to never end. Hardly a blade of grass can be seen, and families travel miles on foot to get water from a muddy hole in the ground. Yet the children willingly ride donkeys and bicycles or walk for miles across rocks to a "school of hope" built of clay. Following both the students and the teachers in the Oulad Boukais Tribe's community school for over three years, School of Hope shows students Mohamed, Miloud, Fatima, and their classmates, responding with childish glee to the school's altruistic young teacher, Mohamed. Each child faces individual obstacles - supporting their aging parents; avoiding restrictions from relatives based on traditional gender roles - while their young teacher makes do in a house with no electricity or water.

international title: School of Hope
original title: School of Hope
country: Finland, France, Morocco
year: 2021
genre: documentary
directed by: Mohamed El Aboudi
film run: 78'
screenplay: Mohamed El Aboudi
cinematography by: Marita Hällfors, Päivi Kettunen, Hannu-Pekka Vitikainen
film editing: Florence Bresson, Mohamed El Aboudi, Lizi Gelber, Mikko Sippola
music: Richard Horowitz, Andrew Silagy
producer: Dominique Barneaud, Aimee Link, Hind Saïh
co-producer: Lamia Chraibi
executive producer: Jody Allen, Rocky Collins, Ruth Johnston
associate producer: Susan Grella
production: Illume Oy, Bellota Films, La Prod (MA), Vulcan Productions (US)

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