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Egypt


Cairo Station

Cairo Station Lowest new price: $20.99
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Youssef Chahine's masterpiece. A street level expose of sexual obsession and working class madness that s as grimy and claustrophobic as its Cairo railway station setting. From its noirish opening scene, in which a scruffy newspaper hawker discovers a rag strewn living quarters filled with cutout girlie pictures and intones, I knew then that something was desperately wrong, it s clear that the film has departed from the upper class realms of typical 1950s Arab cinema. Chahine moves his camera as fluidly as a sleepwalker through a nightmarish world where, as luggage porters strive to unionize and all sections of society swarm along the tracks, the crippled street vendor Qinawi (played by Chahine himself) feverishly desires a brash, beautiful and utterly uninterested lemonade seller, with dangerous results. Combining Italian neo-realism, Egyptian romanticism and overheated film noir, Cairo Station was unlike anything anyone had seen on movie screens before.

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Adrift on the Nile

Adrift on the Nile Lowest new price: $979.99
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In "Adrift on the Nile" we meet a group of hedonistic middle-aged friends who gather each night on a luxurious houseboat for dancing, love-making and smoking hashish. When a young news reporter visits the houseboat to write a story on the group, she is outraged to learn the tragic depths of their social alienation. Based on the novel by the Nobel Laureate Naguib Mahfouz, this 1971 production offers a revealing look at the Egyptian elite on the eve of the 1967 War. By this time, Nasser had ushered in an age of enormous social change, leaving the sons and daughters of the old bourgeoisie high and dry. Directed by Hussein Kamal, "Adrift on the Nile" features the atmospheric cinematography of Mostapha Emam and a delightful musical number in color. DVD EXTRAS include English and French subtitles, rare original trailer and filmographies.


A Man in our House

A Man in our House Lowest new price: $979.99
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List price: $29.99

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Alexandria...Why?

Alexandria...Why? Lowest new price: $32.01
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List price: $24.98

Set in the Egypt during and after World War II, Youssef Chahine's autobiographical drama of his youth in Cairo is a bright, bustling mosaic of a country embroiled in conflict and struggling with its identity. Centered on the story of high school student Yehia Mourad (Mohsen Mohiedine), Chahine's cinematic alter ego, it's national history through a personal perspective and the first film autobiography ever in Egyptian cinema. As the strains of nationalism set Arabs against British soldiers, political factions against one another, and races and cultures at odds, Yehia escapes through theater and the movies, dreaming of Hollywood as he stages his own plays and theatrical reviews until he's swept up in student activism. No stranger to challenging conventions and taboos, Chahine features an interfaith romance between a Jewish woman and a Muslim activist and a homosexual relationship between Yehia's wealthy uncle and a young British soldier among his many stories. In fact, he packs the film so full that the colors threaten to bleed together, but Chahine masterfully keeps the film coherent and clear while driving it forward at a racing pace. The action at times abruptly jumps from one thread to another, as if matching Yehia's torn loyalties between art and political action, but the tonal shifts only add another layer of richness to the passion Chahine has lavished on this film. It won the Special Jury Prize at Berlin in 1979 (Chahine's first major festival prize), and was followed by two other autobiographical films, An Egyptian Story and Alexandria Again and Forever, which became known as the Alexandria Trilogy. --Sean Axmaker

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Control Room

Control Room Lowest new price: $5.11
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Brand: LION'S GATE ENTERTAINMENT

Control room is a rate film that is both timely and timeless: timeless because it ecplores the ancient and complex relationship between the western and Arab worlds timely because it reveals how satellite television has changed the way wars are reported- from news providers driven by the patriotism of their audiences to army information officers driven by military objectives. Control room is a seminal documentary that explores how truth is gathered presented and ultimately created by those who deliver it.System Requirements: Running Time 86 MinFormat: DVD MOVIE Genre: DOCUMENTARIES/MISC. Rating: NR UPC: 031398169321 Manufacturer No: 16932

Startling and powerful, Control Room is a documentary about the Arab television network Al-Jazeera's coverage of the U.S.-led Iraqi war, and conflicts that arose in managed perceptions of truth between that news media outlet and the American military. Egyptian-American filmmaker Jehane Noujaim (Startup.com) catches the frantic action at Al-Jazeera headquarters as President Bush stipulates his 48-hour, get-out-of-town warning to Saddam Hussein and sons, soon followed by the network's shocking footage of Iraqi civilians terrorized and killed by invading U.S. troops. Al-Jazeera's determination to show images and report details outside the Pentagon's carefully controlled information flow draws the wrath of American officials, who accuse it of being an al-Qaida propagandist. (The killing of an Al-Jazeera reporter in what appears to be a deliberately targeted air strike is horrifying.) Most fascinating is the way Control Room allows well-meaning, Western-educated, pro-democratic Arabs an opportunity to express views on Iraq as they see it--in an international context, and in a way most Americans never hear about. --Tom Keogh

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Destiny [Region 2]

Destiny [Region 2] Lowest new price: $31.99
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France released, PAL/Region 2 DVD: it WILL NOT play on standard US DVD player. You need multi-region PAL/NTSC DVD player to view it in USA/Canada: LANGUAGES: Arabic ( Dolby Digital 2.0 ), Arabic ( Dolby Digital Stereo ), English ( Subtitles ), French ( Subtitles ), WIDESCREEN (1.78:1), SPECIAL FEATURES: Interactive Menu, Scene Access, SYNOPSIS: In twelfth-century Cordoba, the Caliph orders all books written by the eminent philosopher Averroe's to be burnt, to mollify the fundamentalists. Averroe's family and followers decide to make copies of his books and smuggle them across the border. Despite the pressure from fundamentalists, human knowledge prevails and the influence of Averroe's teaching extended through the Enlightenment to the present day. SCREENED/AWARDED AT: Cannes Film Festival, ...Destiny ( Le Destin ) ( Al Massir )


Alexandria Trilogy

Alexandria Trilogy Lowest new price: $159.99
Lowest used price: $237.98
List price: $69.98

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The Nightingale's Prayer

The Nightingale's Prayer Lowest new price: $398.90
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The Nightingale's Prayer (Arabic: دعاء الكروان‎, translit. Doaa al-Karawan is a classical 1959 Egyptian drama film directed by Henry Barakat and based on a novel by the prominent writer Taha Hussein. It stars Faten Hamama and Ahmed Mazhar. In 1996, during the Egyptian Cinema centennial, this film was selected one of the best 150 Egyptian film productions. It received an award of recognition from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and was selected as the Egyptian entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 32nd Academy Awards, but was not accepted as a nominee. It was also entered into the 10th Berlin International Film Festival. (via Wikipedia)


The Emigrant

The Emigrant Lowest new price: $25.61
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Brand: Image Entertainment

Filled with beautiful location shots of Egyptian ruins and lush re-enactments of decadent cult rituals, Youssef Chahine's The Emigrant is a fascinating retelling of the biblical tale of Joseph, told from an Egyptian perspective. Ram ("Joseph"), tired of his family's backward superstitious life and bullying brothers, wants to travel Egypt to study agriculture. His brothers travel with him across the Sinai but suddenly sell him to an Egyptian who works for a regional military leader, who is impressed by Ram's drive and grants him desolate land outside the capital. Ram soon finds himself a pawn in the political and sexual games between Amihar and his wife Simihit, a high priestess of the Cult of Amun.

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Closed Doors, The

Closed Doors, The Lowest new price: $18.99
Lowest used price: $0.81
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Winner!
- International Thessaloniki FF

Winner!
- Bahrain Film Fest

Winner!
- Montpellier Film Fest

Directed by Youssef Chahine's longtime assistant, The Closed Doors touches on several taboos in contemporary Egyptian society, examining their social and political implications. Set during the Gulf War, it tells the story of Mohamad, a highly impressionable young man who embraces fundamentalist ideas as a way of dealing with the confusion of adolescence and sexual awakening. This powerful first feature by one of Egypt's most promising young directors tackles complex themes like oppression, jealousy, virtue, the love ideal and violence in an uncompromising way.

DVD EXTRAS:

  • Audio: Arabic
  • Subtitles: English
  • Typecast Movie Trailers
  • Widescreen
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