Under the Fig Trees Review

Under the Fig Trees Review

In the world of cinema, there are certain films that captivate us with their dreamy and sensual storytelling. “Under the Fig Trees” is one such film, a Tunisian drama that takes us on a journey through long, hot days and the enchanting world of fig pickers.

In this review, we will explore the beguiling nature of this film, its themes, and the captivating performances that bring it to life.

A Moment of Respite

The fig groves serve as a sanctuary from the stifling summer heat of rural Tunisia, providing a brief respite for the young fruit pickers from their restrictive village communities.

Director Erige Sehiri beautifully captures the essence of these moments, painting a vivid picture of the fig trees’ broad, coarse leaves offering protection and escape.

The Power of Relationships

“Under the Fig Trees” is a quiet and observational piece of storytelling that delves into the relationships between the laborers. Sehiri’s naturalistic approach and non-professional cast bring authenticity to the screen, allowing us to witness the teasing play of emotions among the characters.

The film weaves together the budding relationships and explores the dynamics between the young workers, their boss, and each other.

Flirting and Fig-Picking

While fig-picking may be their job, the young laborers spend more time flirting with each other than actually picking figs. Fidé, portrayed with defiance and charisma by Fidé Fdhili, shrugs off the whispers resulting from her friendship with the boss.

Her sister Feten, played by Feten Fdhili, experiences a flutter of excitement when her former boyfriend unexpectedly shows up to work. These moments of youthful exuberance and hidden desires add depth to the narrative.

The Orchards’ Secrets

Within the fig orchards lie hidden secrets. A couple clandestinely hides crates of fruit for later theft, while the boss abuses his power over the young women in his employ. These elements of intrigue and tension further enhance the complexity of the story, drawing us deeper into the lives of the characters.

Sensual Imagery

Sehiri’s masterful use of a honey-drenched color palette and sensual imagery transports us into the world of “Under the Fig Trees.”

The film captures a moment ripe with possibility, particularly for the younger workers. The music in the film hints at generational differences, with exuberant teenagers singing a festive folk song while middle-aged Leila softly weeps as she sings a lament.


“Under the Fig Trees” is a mesmerizing and sensual Tunisian drama that immerses viewers in the world of fig pickers. Through its quiet and observational storytelling, the film explores the complexities of relationships, the allure of hidden desires, and the power of moments of respite. With its captivating performances and exquisite visuals, this film is a must-watch for enthusiasts of world cinema.


  1. Is “Under the Fig Trees” a Tunisian film?
    Yes, “Under the Fig Trees” is a Tunisian drama directed by Erige Sehiri.
  2. What themes are explored in the film?
    The film explores themes of relationships, hidden desires, and the power of moments of respite.
  3. Are the actors in the film professionals or non-professionals?
    The film features a non-professional cast, which adds authenticity to the storytelling.