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Mother of All Lies, The

Mother of All Lies, The

Mother of All Lies, The

Dir. Asmae El Moudir
96 min

Asmae El Moudir’s grandmother Zahra always refused to get her photo taken. Seeking to understand her family’s past, El Moudir creates a miniature of their Casablanca neighborhood, and invites the family to reenact moments in the past, with eye-opening results.

Zahra is an embittered woman, who has never allowed photos to be taken, much less displayed. So Asmae, desperate to understand her family’s history, works with her father to create her family’s entire Moroccan neighborhood, with dolls for her family and neighbors, and then invites people to recreate moments she can film. What begins with an exploration of family soon descends into finger-pointing and recriminations as history brushes up against the personal.

“[A]n astonishing work whose maturity comes from El Moudir’s wide-eyed approach to her family history, where memory and history are quite literally reduced to playthings in order to process the unspeakable events they conjure up.” –Manuel Betancourt, Variety

Film Details

Release Year: 2023
Runtime: 96 min
Country/Region: Morocco, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Qatar
Language: Arabic
Print Source: Autlook Filmsales
Tags: Documentary, Family, Mystery, Oscar Submission, Sociopolitical, SWANA Stories, Women Directors


Director: Asmae El Moudir
Producer: Asmae El Moudir
Cinematographer: Hatem Nechi
Screenwriter: Asmae El Moudir
Editor: Asmae El Moudir
Composer: Nass El Ghiwane