A Prophet (Un prophete)
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Condemned to six years in prison, Malik El Djebena, part Arab, part Corsican, cannot read or write. Arriving at the jail entirely alone, he appears younger and more fragile than the other convicts. He is 19 years old. Cornered by the leader of the Corsican gang currently ruling the prison, he is given a number of "missions" to carry out, toughening him up and gaining the gang leader's confidence in the process. Malik is a fast learner and rises up the prison ranks, all the while secretly devising his own plans.

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 97%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"A movie that stands with the best prison thrillers from any country; a film that vividly illustrates the connection between prison and the violent, radical form of Islam that keeps much of Europe on edge."
‑ Roger Moore, Orlando Sentinel
"The success of Malik is sheer American dream via France: Anyone can make it if they try hard enough. Make it at what, of course, is always the question."
‑ Tom Long, Detroit News
"But with its lush Alexandre Desplat score, deeply shadowed compositions, and fluid, understated camera movement, A Prophet is distinctly an Audiard construction."
‑ Amy Taubin, Film Comment Magazine
"Like Goodfellas without the visual fizz, or Scarface played straight, this is, quite simply, one of the greatest prison films ever made."
‑ Matt Glasby, Flicks.co.nz
"...a journey of hard-fought survival told with an unforgettable verve and originality."
‑ Chris Barsanti, PopMatters
"Audiard has talked about the prospects of a sequel to A Prophet. With the foundation he has built here, it would be a welcome one."
‑ David Germain, Associated Press
"Audiard never overplays the new experiences facing Malik, be they violent or touching. Yet his tender regard for our complicated hero shines through."
‑ Lisa Kennedy, Denver Post
"This is a brutal prison crime drama that shows the transformation of a small-time criminal into a big-time crime boss."
‑ Robert Roten, Laramie Movie Scope
"An epic-styled comment on the practical side of getting through modern life, with spirituality and loyalty playing side parts to gaining raw skill."
‑ Jeffrey Chen, Window to the Movies
"the rarest of crime films: One that turns us inside out with concern not only for Malik's physical safety, but for the safety of his soul"
‑ James Kendrick, Q Network Film Desk
"A Prophet is essential viewing for art-film buffs and crime-flick fans, but also for anyone who's looking for a great story, terrific acting and masterful filmmaking."
‑ Calvin Wilson, St. Louis Post-Dispatch
"The film never succumbs to the pitfalls of the prison-movie genre, and there's something poetic about how Audiard, in the midst of all this violence, manages to make a punch to the stomach seem like the most violent act of all."
‑ Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald
"A movie that has more in common with Jean Genet than Frantz Fanon, but there's enough insights into white colonial domination of Arab peoples to make this a cut above the standard prison melodrama. Highly recommended."
‑ Louis Proyect, rec.arts.movies.reviews
"... a riveting portrait of a prison education."
‑ Sean Axmaker, Parallax View
"While A Prophet might lack the ambiguity and the moral complexity to make it a classic of its genre, it is an excellent work by most standards."
‑ Jeremy Heilman, MovieMartyr.com
More reviews for A Prophet (Un prophete) on Rotten Tomatoes

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