37th Annual VIRGINIA FILM FESTIVAL Oct 30-Nov 3, 2024

37th Annual VIRGINIA FILM FESTIVAL October 30-November 3, 2024


ANIMALIA final Play Button

World Cinema Dramatic Special Jury Award, Sundance

Heavily pregnant Itto enjoys new affluence following her marriage to Amine, though Amine’s mother does not hide her disdain for her daughter-in-law. Home alone for the day, Itto relaxes in her luxurious, gated Moroccan residence when green lightning suddenly fills the desert skies above, the harbinger of an earth-shattering supernatural event. She sets off to find her husband, and in the midst of abnormal animal behavior and colossal storms, she finds herself on a journey of self-discovery that questions formations of religion, wealth, and gender.

Writer and director Sofia Alaoui tactfully imbues Animalia with eeriness and surreality; with pointedly less grandeur and decisiveness than typical science-fiction, the film reaches towards the realm of the mystical. As Itto moves throughout an alarming physical world, she befriends a dog and a fellow Berber, Fouad, as well as encounters a spiritual and psychological metamorphosis. Alaoui ultimately delivers a powerful contemplation on the irrefutable interconnectedness of humanity through Itto’s personal and physical journey.

Introduction by Samhita Sunya (VAFF).


Sunday, October 29


2:00 PM


Violet Crown 1 & 2

Film Info

Director: Sofia Alaoui

Runtime: 91 min.

Year: 2023

Country: France, Morocco, Qatar

Language: French, Arabic, Berber

Accessibility: Subtitles

Featuring: Mehdi Dehbi, Oumaïma Barid, Fouad Oughaou, Souad Khouyi

Presented by


Presented by

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