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‘Adam’ (2021) review: Tender story about love and friendship

Patient and engaging.

Adam is the story about an unwed girl who wanders into the life of a single mother and her one daughter. It is the foundation for many melodramatic movies that seem to only exist to make audiences cry. Writer-director Maryam Touzani’s film is different. The story is about a Moroccan girl named Samia who is pregnant and looking for a place to live. When she comes to the home of Abla looking for work, Samia is told in no uncertain terms to go away. This leads to a change in the lives of all three.

It would be real easy for a film with this premise to enter into the realm of emotional manipulation. All the ingredients are there to mercilessly tug at heartstrings. This is never the case with Adam due to its smart writing. The story never goes all in on the melodramatic moments. The story is a predictable one, but it never fails to be impactful.

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Things may move along as expected, but this does not prevent Adam from being engaging. The film is perfectly paced, never rushing to provide information or build its relationships. The characters are fully developed. Each breakthrough and setback is felt by the audience. The script earns each feeling it elicits from those who are watching.

The camerawork also ensures all of the emotion is fully realized. The film begins with a close up filled with anxiety and relief. Adam is filled with this type of intimacy. The majority of the film takes place in a kitchen. Many of the shots are framed in a way that brings comfort and claustrophobia. It is a masterful mix that draws the audience into the story.

Adam is a poignant movie that explores a new friendship between two women and a young girl. It proves that a story does not have to be filled with twists and turns to keep the audience captivated. Nothing is ever over the top in this touching tale. Strong characters and writing make what could be an overly cute tale, a thoroughly enjoyable one.

Adam opens at Angelika Anywhere Virtual Cinema and Virtual Cinemas and Premium Video On Demand Nationwide March 5

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