The King of Algiers

FRA 2023
Director: Elias Belkeddar
Cast: Reda Kateb, Benoît Magimel, Meriem Amiar

92 Min. | OmeU
German Premiere

»Omar the Strawberry« is quite the crook. Very few dare to laugh at his name, but most know one story that earned the great Omar his reverential nickname. In France, he has been sentenced to twenty years in jail in absentia, which is why he now hangs out in Algiers with his buddy Roger and essentially tries to fly under the radar. A few small scams do creep into his daily routine, though, which otherwise consists of boring factory work, light fitness exercises and extensive drinking binges. But then Omar meets pretty Samia, and although he makes a real effort to become a different person, the crooked things in his life have the stubborn habit of reappearing at the most inopportune moment.
The Algerian capital, with its incomparably exotic atmosphere, indeed turns out to be something like the fourth main character in Elias Belkaddar's light-hearted gangster saga, which comes across as a most joyful turn on the classic gangster stories with a cast in absolute top form.
When we hear the third and fourth story how Omar became »Omar the Strawberry«, we remember that the most beautiful legends are born in the cinema.