2012. Saudi Arabia/Germany. Haifaa Al-Mansour. 112 min.
Friday, November 29, 2013, 8:00 p.m.
Theater 1 (The Roy and Niuta Titus Theater 1), T1
2012. Saudi Arabia/Germany. Directed by Haifaa Al-Mansour. Haifaa Al Mansour’s debut feature is also the first film made by a woman in Saudi Arabia. Featuring an all-Saudi cast, it focuses on girls' and women’s daily lives in the progressively educated middle class, providing a view into a hitherto closed society. The film is also a successful continuation of a cinema—like that of Iran—which uses children protagonists to pose urgent sociopolitical questions and open a dialogue into tensions between tradition and modernity. The film tells a universal story of childhood dreams, obstructions, and tribulations through the eyes of a rebellious Saudi girl whose determination to get a glorious green bike (shades of the The Bicycle Thief) is made all the more emotionally compelling a terrific performance by the charismatic Waad Mohammed as Wadjda. Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics. In Arabic; English subtitles. 112 min.