top of page


Beneath A Mother's Feet

average rating is 5 out of 5


Patrick Foley


Posted on:

Mar 12, 2024

Film Reviews
Beneath A Mother's Feet
Directed by:
Elias Suhail
Written by:
Elias Suhail
Nisrine Adam, Hamid Sabek, Fatiha Zouine

A raw and personal short drama, Beneath a Mother’s Feet is a British-Moroccan production that beautifully and heartbreakingly reflects on an impossible choice inspired by true events in director Elias Suhail’s life.


Single mother Wedad (Nisrine Adam) lives a distressed life as she does her best to raise her child in the suburbs of Morocco. She tries to cope with her doubts, fears and anxieties to make it through her everyday life, but the stresses of unbearable turmoil lead her to considering an impossible decision – one which she knows will reverberate through both her own life, and the life of her children.


Beneath a Mother’s Feet is a bold, bare and daring film that appropriately conveys the emotional magnitude of its pivotal event in a respectful, contemplative and empathetic manner. At the story’s heart is Wedad, brilliantly brought to life by Nisrine Adam, whose mental state is slowly crumbling around her as she tries to balance responsible motherhood with outright survival. The world she inhabits is beautifully shot but quietly hostile – with wonderous city landscapes and yearning long shots partnered with mind-bending, horror-adjacent scenes to portray her life as truly unsettling.


Adam herself is fantastic in the role, unwilling for so long to accept her struggle and dishevelment until it is too late. Her face tells much of the story, with pain and strife scratching at the surface. External demonstrations of motherhood amplify her self-doubt, until the film’s devastating ending. Suhail gives proper respect to his audience in coming to their own conclusions on Wedad’s actions – evidently confident thanks to Adam’s performance that viewers will have come to an understanding of the complexity that has come to be integral in Wedad’s life that has led her to the road she takes.


The themes of self-determination, rationalisation, discovery and the weight of one’s actions on others weave constantly through the narrative. Elias Suhail has openly stated that the film is inspired by his mother’s own actions – ones which he has endeavoured to comprehend and reconcile since. As a tool to reflect on his own life, the film is healing vehicle and an emotional juggernaut. But brilliantly it can also be received by any viewer as a reflection on their own life, for events that we ourselves struggle to ever come to peace with. Wedad’s decision is an unthinkable one. But not taking it threatens to consume her. Anyone presented with a similar dilemma in their own life will find at least some kinship with Wedad thanks to the film’s clever and innovative construction of turmoil.


Beneath a Mother’s Feet is a true accomplishment and a demonstration of the emotional depth short films can pack. The true-life motivation of the filmmaker adds to the film’s weight, but even free of its context, the layers of the film which underpin its central premise mean viewers will be left experiencing the reverberations of the film’s finale – in a deliberate way to mimic those of the all-too-real consequences of our own decisions.

About the Film Critic
Patrick Foley
Patrick Foley
Digital / DVD Release, Short Film, World Cinema
bottom of page