• CNAP Award  
  • French Competition

The Cell

We all remember Broken Leg (FID2011) and Black Diamond (2014), in which Samir Ramdani played with codes as a virtuoso and easily threaded his way through the urban spaces of the American west coast. Here he demonstrates again his talent as a choreographer, but in settings that are more difficult to enchant. Indeed, the film arose from a workshop at Charles Péguy high school in Paris, and developed through a series of sessions spread over time. A science-fiction film with quite obvious references (Village of the Damned, of course, but also They Live, The Matrix, Romero, early Cronenberg…), La Cellule openly displays its modest production costs: continued voice-over in lieu of dialogues, recurring rudimentary special effects, a cast entirely made of kids and non-professional actors, with Samir Ramdani (skilfully) playing one of the main characters himself. Yet, just like a B movie, the film overflows with an energy as infectious as the virus mentioned in the story, like a furtive nod to current events. With its extremely precise direction of amazingly committed actors, its clear-cut shots and its constant ingeniousness, the film takes us hastily from one surprise to the next. And it never lets go of the political affair that the motley youth on screen embodies, claims and produces. La Cellule holds no prisoner here; instead it proliferates and spreads in a mighty efficient, joyful and fun way. (J.-P.R.)

  • CNAP Award  
  • French Competition

Technical sheet

France / 2020 / Color / HD / 49’

Origial version : French.
Subtitles : English.
Script : Samir Ramdani, Thomas Stuck.
Photography : Samir Ramdani.
Editing : Samir Ramdani.
Music : Pierre Sendrané.
Sound : Charlotte Comte, Arno Ledoux.
Casting : Amanda About, Soraya Ramdani.
Production : Samsha (Alexis Bougon).
Distribution : Samsha (Alexis Bougon).