The Hope of Prince Ali

by

When first starting this film I did not know what to expect. Is it going to be hopeful? Is it going to be discouraging? Is this what all of Morocco is like? Do all kids suffer this life? The fact that I had to realize that this is what some of the kid’s realities are was infuriating. It hurt me to know that the norm for children on the streets is to be so deceitful, so dirty, so hurt by everyone around them. They didn’t have anyone. No one cared for them, they did not have a home to go back to at the end of a long day in the sun, trying to get people to buy their beat down, hand made little goods. The fact that there were gangs of children was quite shocking to me as well. The fact that they not only had to fight for survival and finding food everyday, they also had to fight each other by resisting going into a gang that would mark them even worse than before. Their resistance was to Dib and his gang, who when in contact with, was violent and abusive, with much control over all the little boys. So through all of this corruption, all of this turmoil, where did they find their hope? Where did they find their acceptance? It was in each other. Ali Zaoua was the prince of the streets. He was the leader in their eyes. The only hope that they found was in his stories of his magical island and the two setting suns that were a part of it. In the beginning scene of this film, Ali was talking to a reporter, telling her what his life was going to be like when he was older, that he was going to be a sailor, and sail away to his island with two suns. He was the only one out of the group of boys to verbalize his dreams, to let the reporter know that he was going to be someone and do something with his life. When Ali was killed with the stone by one of Dib’s boys, Ali’s friends Kwita, Omar and Boubker, adopted his dream. The movie then turned into an adventure to seek one single goal, to bury Ali. Throughout this journey to find the resources to bury their dear friend Ali, they come into contact with many different people that they had had ideas about but never knew, prior to Ali’s death. There is new discovery, there is even more hope than before. When coming into contact with his mother, there were a lot of different emotions and trials that were faced as Omar visited her three different times, part of him just wanted a mother, and to stay there forever. When Omar went back the third time, it was to tell Ali’s mother the truth. The truth that Ali had died and that they wanted to bury him. She was outraged, but it was soon after that that she accepted it and wanted to be a part of setting Ali free to the sea. When the boys came into contact with the sailor, he seemed to fill a certain role in the movie. He started taking care of them, letting them sleep in the cabin. Allowing them to dream up Ali’s island. And becoming a sort of guardian over them. A big moment and interpretation that I took from the movie was when Kwita was hurt by Omar with the glass bottle and goes to sit on the steps. When he is sitting there, a white and black little puppy starts crawling up to him, Kwita throws the dog down the stairs, yet the dog continues up, three more times. It seems to Kwita no matter how many times he tells the dog to shoo and throws him, he comes back. On the third time that the dog comes back, Kwita is now lying down and allows the dog to stay. He says “why do you keep coming back?” The dog begins to nestle up into his neck where his wound was and lay there with him. We could depict the image and symbol of the dog in many different ways but my first impression of it was that it resembled a God like figure, someone who no matter how many times you turn down, will always come back and comfort your wounds and heal your heart. My favorite scene in this movie was the ending one, with the boys dreaming up what Ali’s life will be like in heaven on his island. Also I loved the way that things came to life in this film. In a way, this is how it kept its innocence. The fact that there was still a sense of imagination in the eyes of Kwita. Price Ali will forever be their hope and determination to find and seek a better life, whether that is on the sea, on the streets. 

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