19/05/2012

Cannes - After the Battle a 'love letter' to Egyptians

Events and Festivals, Industry, Egypt

Cannes - After the Battle a 'love letter' to Egyptians

The Arab spring, subject to a multitude of images spread all around the world via internet, has also become the object of cinema, making its way to the Croisette's red carpet through the Egyptian director Yousry Nasrallah, who came to present After the Battle on Thursday.

Co-produced with France not without difficulty due to a scenario that held only five pages, by the director's own admission - After the Battle brings the discovery of a unique universe, a true society not far from the site of Gizeh that lived off of tourism.

The action takes place after the 2nd of February 2011, the day when the horsemen, manipulated by Moubarak's regime in the director's opinion, charged the protestors of Tahir Square.

Mahmoud (Bassem Samra) is one of them. Beaten throughout this day, he is now ostracised from his community. He children are suffering the consequences at school.

His amorous encounter with Rim (Menna Chalaby), an incarnation of the modern Egyptian woman, imbued with notions of justice and equality, is even more improbable. Especially when Mahmoud's wife Fatma (Nahed El Sebaï) gives him her consent.

"This film talks about a man who is trying to regain his dignity and that of his family, to find his place in a changing Egypt," explained Nasrallah on Thursday, who was once the assistant director of Youssef Chahine, the icon of Egyptian cinema who passed away in 2008.

This small story, which even implicates a local "godfather", thus mixes with the big story, whereby the difficulty to establish an equilibrium between the two, which Nasrallah is still unable to do.

After the Battle, the third film of the competition to be shown at Cannes, is first and foremost a "love letter" to Egypt and Egyptians, he explained.

"I cannot bestow upon the horsemen the entire responsibility of the counter-revolution," he claims.

"If I made this film it's because Egypt, and the Egyptian people who are still not used to democracy, who make their first steps in light of recovering their dignity, because a dictatorship makes you hate yourself, these people deserve this love letter that we wrote to them through this film."

 

Source: http://tempsreel.nouvelobs.com/topnews/20120517.REU6539/cannes-apres-la-bataille-une-lettre-d-amour-aux-egyptiens.html

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