Arab Cinema: History and Cultural Identity by Viola Shafik

By Viola Shafik

Because it used to be first released in 1998, Viola Shafik’s Arab Cinema: heritage and Cultural identification has develop into an quintessential paintings for students of movie and the modern heart East. Combining precise narrative history—economic, ideological, and aesthetic—with thought-provoking research, Arab Cinema offers a entire review of cinema within the Arab international, tracing the industry’s improvement from colonial occasions to the current. It analyzes the ambiguous dating with advertisement western cinema, and the impact of Egyptian marketplace dominance within the zone. Tracing the effect at the medium of neighborhood and local paintings varieties and modes of proposal, either classical and well known, Shafik exhibits how indigenous and exterior components mix in a dynamic means of “cultural repackaging.”

Now up-to-date to mirror cultural shifts within the final ten years of cinema, this revised variation incorporates a new afterword highlighting the most recent advancements in renowned movie and in cinéma d’auteur (art residence movies), with a distinct concentrate on Iraq, Lebanon, and Palestine. whereas exploring complicated concerns corresponding to eu co-production for Arab paintings movies, together with their relation to cultural identification and their reception within the sector and overseas, this new version introduces readers to a few of the main compelling cinematic works of the decade.

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The Tunisians Mahmoud Ben Mahmoud, Nouri Bouzid, Nejia Ben Mabrouk, and the Algerian Brahim Tsaki studied in Brussels. The Algerian Mohamed Lakhdar Hamina was one of the few directors trained in an East European country, the former Czechoslovakia. Souheil Ben Baraka and the Tunisian producer Ahmed Attia acquired their skills in Italy. Not only inhabitants of the Maghreb studied in Paris; other Arabs, including the Egyptians Taufik Salih and Hussein Kamal and the Lebanese Borhane Alaouie, also studied there.

89 For this reason actors' fees are enormous in comparison to the total budget. , about US$230,000. Up to LE300,000 may have to be spent on fees for the stars, which means that little remains for props, set, costumes, transport, and wages. The Egyptian model was followed in almost all Arab countries. Immediately after independence, private entrepreneurs were in many cases to make use of Egyptian know-how. In Syria several privately produced films were directed by Egyptians in the 1960s and 1970s, including works by Hilmi Rafla and cAtif Salim.

The introduction of electronic media in the Gulf states resulted in an increasing consumption of the Egyptian mass product, whereas in the Arab west, demand for Egyptian movies declined rapidly in some places, not least because of increasing home production in these countries. 88 This development forced the Egyptian film industry into an increasing dependency on distribution companies from the Arabian Peninsula. There were discussions in the 1970s about investments by Saudi Arabian businessmen, who wanted through a kind of joint venture to take over the public companies with their studios; such investments have failed to materialize, however, because of protest by cineastes.

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