Raja (2004)


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Movie Info

Directed and written by Jacques Doillon, Raja centers around a bored, middle-aged Frenchman, Fred (Pascal Greggory), and his decision to employ a small group of women to care for his garden. Before long, Fred becomes enamored with 19-year-old Raja (Najat Benssallem), one of his employees. Despite her innocent appearance, Raja is physically and emotionally scarred -- an Arab orphan, she was repeatedly raped and forced into prostitution at a young age. Fred becomes determined to seduce Raja, but the language barrier is a serious problem and Raja is confused by many of Fred's efforts. Though Fred's interest had began as little more than a game, he eventually finds himself in the midst of a dangerous obsession.

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Zineb Ouchita
as Cook No. 2
Aicha Aarif
as Gardener No. 1
Hajiba Firma
as Gardener No. 2
Jmiaa Aarif
as Gardener No. 3
Hanane Ben Jaddi
as Girl in Bar No. 1
Samra Ben Arafa
as Girl in Bar No. 2
Samira El Othmani
as Girl in Bar No. 3
Abdelilah Lamrani
as Raja's Brother
Rachida Boukhima
as Raja's Sister
Zineb Khoulaki
as Raja's Sister-in-Law
Fatima Zorha
as Girl from Douar
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Critic Reviews for Raja

All Critics (14) | Top Critics (5)

An unsettling look at Third World politics in the guise of a love story.

Apr 1, 2004

Extremely well acted, though the direction by Jacques Doillon is on the leisurely side.

Mar 26, 2004 | Rating: 2/4

There's little to enjoy in this unsettling tale, but Doillan's unblinking depiction of manipulation and desperation stays with you long after the characters make the deals that seal their unjust fates.

Mar 26, 2004 | Rating: 2.5/4

Masterful tale of frustrated desire.

Nov 19, 2003

What distinguishes Raja from every other movie to contemplate the treacherous intersection of passion, avarice and power is its unsettling emotional honesty.

Oct 16, 2003 | Rating: 3/5

Depicting both French and Moroccan culture with sympathy and wit, Raja uses the language barrier between the would-be lovers as an excuse to throw up a network of perpendicular commentary.

Oct 17, 2018 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Raja


An interesting story plot. Good movie.

Leo L
Leo L

Super Reviewer

It's not that this isn't a quality film it's just really slimey watching the older, more powerful, and uglier man trying to take advantage of that girl.

FanGirl Browncoat
FanGirl Browncoat

Super Reviewer

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