A Prophet (Un prophete) (2010) - Rotten Tomatoes

A Prophet (Un prophete) (2010)



Critic Consensus: Featuring an impressive star turn by newcomer Tahar Rahim, A Prophet is a French gangster film filled with arresting, immediate details.

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Movie Info

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.more
Rating: R (for strong violence, sexual content, nudity, language and drug material)
Genre: Art House & International, Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Jacques Audiard, Thomas Bidegain, Nicolas Peufaillit, Abdel Raouf Dafri
In Theaters:
On DVD: Aug 3, 2010
Box Office: $1.5M
Sony Pictures Classics - Official Site


Tahar Rahim
as Malik El Djebena
Niels Arestrup
as César Luciani
Reda Kateb
as Jordi le gitan
Pierre Leccia
as Sampierro
Frédéric Graziani
as Chef detention
Slimane Dazi
as Lattrache
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for A Prophet (Un prophete)

Critic Reviews for A Prophet (Un prophete)

All Critics (147) | Top Critics (38)

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.

Full Review… | April 21, 2010
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic

But with its lush Alexandre Desplat score, deeply shadowed compositions, and fluid, understated camera movement, A Prophet is distinctly an Audiard construction.

Full Review… | July 12, 2013
Film Comment Magazine

This is a brutal prison crime drama that shows the transformation of a small-time criminal into a big-time crime boss.

Full Review… | December 30, 2010
Laramie Movie Scope

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.

Full Review… | October 6, 2010

Like Goodfellas without the visual fizz, or Scarface played straight, this is, quite simply, one of the greatest prison films ever made.

Full Review… | September 6, 2010

An epic-styled comment on the practical side of getting through modern life, with spirituality and loyalty playing side parts to gaining raw skill.

Full Review… | August 17, 2010
Window to the Movies

Audience Reviews for A Prophet (Un prophete)

A gripping French gangster film that depicts the many brutal changes that a man can go through after entering prison, and the 19-year-old Arab-Corsican delinquent who slowly learns to become a murderer is played with an impressive intensity by Tahar Rahim.

Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

An illiterate half-Arab, half-Corsican serves a prison sentence and rises to become a mob leader.
This film is mediocre Martin Scorsese -- wait, it's not directed by Scorsese? Shocking! Then I guess this film is mediocre imitation Scorsese. It dark, depressing, virile, and remarkably violent. I make the Scorsese joke because films like Goodfellas and Casino achieve an impossible ethical feat: they make being a mobster seem cool; they make us say, "Gee, if I were a mobster, I'd be that cool, dressing in sherbet-colored suits." And A Prophet wants us to make the same type of ethical leap: they want us to sympathize with a character who goes through a profound ethical transformation from doe-eyed innocent to cold-blooded killer. But unlike the charming Ace Rothstein, Malik doesn't inspire, intrigue, or charm.
The film's portrayal of Muslim fundamentalism doesn't get a lot of traction and its aim isn't that clear to me.
Overall, Scorsese has done better - wait, are you sure he didn't direct this?

Jim Hunter

Super Reviewer

A morally complex and riveting study of the power struggle within the confines of prison.

Pierluigi Puccini

Super Reviewer

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