Hind Bensari
Morocco - Denmark


Perched atop a mountain overlooking their village in the heat of the day, twelve-year-old boys Karim and Mohamed, each with a spade in hand, work steadily to break through the stubborn ground in a synchronized effort to dig a hole and bury their childhood. As their parents can no longer afford to further their education, both boys have set out to become the men everyone expects them to—men they don’t quite know how to be. After their recent departure from their educational journey, the two struggle to fill the void between childhood and early adulthood with its newfound responsibilities, and have endless time to kill. A camera documents the whole process.

2nd feature

Le Moindre Geste (Morocco)
Alaa Eddine Aljem


Bullitt Films (Denmark)
Vibeke Vogel

Director’s statement

Out of School is a coming-of-age story that follows Karim and Mohamed, two twelve-year-old boys, in their first year out of school. Written like a tale narrated by the children themselves, the film documents the transitional phase of children who must become adults overnight when they can no longer go ahead with their education. The journey of these characters begins in the cocoon of their village with them wearing adult-sized tracksuits that hang loosely on them - a visual metaphor for their current predicament, where responsibility has befallen them prematurely. It’s a coming-of-age story intertwined with the exodus from the village towards urban spaces, and it explores the bittersweet aspects of departing, taking memories, and leaving behind a way of life shaped by the rhythms of nature.


Hind Bensari
Hind Bensari

Born in 1987 in Casablanca, Hind Bensari grew up in London, where she pursued higher education in economics and Middle-Eastern studies at the University of Edinburgh and the London School of Economics. Self-taught in filmmaking, Bensari became the first African filmmaker to receive the Best International Documentary prize at Toronto’s Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival for her first feature-length documentary, We Could Be Heroes (2018). The film went on to be named Best Film at the Tangier Film Festival, a first for a documentary.

Alaa Eddine Aljem
Alaa Eddine Aljem

Alaa Eddine Aljem was born in Rabat in 1988, and studied cinema at EsavM and at Insas in Brussels. He has directed and produced several films that have been selected for numerous festivals around the world. In 2016, Aljem was named one of the five Arab Stars of Tomorrow by Screen International. In 2017, he was chosen as one of Film Independent’s Global Mediamakers. In 2019, he directed and produced The Unknown Saint, which had its world premiere in La Semaine de la Critique section at the Festival de Cannes.

Total budget

€420 000

Financing secured

€152 000

Partners attached

2M Soread, IMS, DAAP, Creative Europe

Shooting period and locations

November 2023—November 2024, Imilchil (Morocco)

Expected delivery

May 2025

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