A Prophet (2009)

A Prophet (2009)

This taut, intense, and gritty French prison drama is future classic material

The Very Best



France, Italy
Arabic, Corsican, French
Crime, Drama
Adel Bencherif, Antoine Basler, Farid Larbi
155 min

What it's about

Sentenced to six years in prison, Malik El Djebena is alone in the world and can neither read nor write. On his arrival at the prison, he seems younger and more brittle than the others detained there. At once he falls under the sway of a group of Corsicans who enforce their rule in the prison. As the 'missions' go by, he toughens himself and wins the confidence of the Corsican group.

The take

A Prophet, or Un Prophete, is an unconventional French film that combines prison drama with the Goodfellas-styled narrative of the rise to criminal power. Shot by the inimitable French director Jacques Audiard, A Prophet is a future classic from the get-go, taking age-old cliches and turning them on their heads. It's not often that a film leaves us giddy with enthusiasm and constantly thinking back to it, but A Prophet is so intense, you won't be able to let it go. Incredible acting, especially by then-newcomer Tahar Rahim, fantastic pacing, a great narrative arc with a brutal and uncompromising take on morality, self-realization, and life on the fringes of society. There are only two, quote unquote, action sequences in this movie and they are as brutal and realistic as they are unexpected. Look past the subtitles, do yourself a favor and watch this film.


This film seems as if you-re there with the actors, incredible to hear French, Corsican and Arabic in the dialogue. A gangster film from rags to riches type of plot. Definitely recommended.

Excellent film, movies like these are very rare to find for me, and I didn’t want it to end. Amazing movie do give it a watch you won’t regret it

Simply incredible. It portrays incarceration with utmost realism and grit. High, high caliber actors too.

This movie had me sitting on the edge of my seat the entire time. Such powerful acting and a really gripping story.

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