The String (Le Fil) is a `gay drama'. It tells the story of thirty year old Malik, played by Antonin Stahly, when he returns to the Colonial home of his mother (Claudia Cardinale -Italian icon etc). All she wants is to see him settle down and marry.
She employs a number of people including a handyman, played by Salim Kechiouche (`Le Clan, `Full Speed'). They take a shine to each other and start a secret relationship. Not only do we have the social difference of rich and poor but also the societal and religious - Christian and Muslim pressures as this is set in Tunisia.
These issues are all explored and there are some genuinely touching scenes. It is beautifully shot, acted and directed. One thing that bothered me was the actual `string' referenced in the title, it is obviously a metaphor, but they actually use a real one attached to Malik at certain points, to emphasise how his family are holding on to him. Whilst this may be seen a stylistic genius, I found it to be more of an alienation device. That said it did not detract too highly from my enjoyment.
I do not want to give any plot spoilers, but this was not all that challenging, more of a gentle love story with some spanners thrown in at certain junctures. In French and Arabic with subtitles (which are not literal at least in the French, in some parts), this has a run time of 90 mins, perfect for the western market.