“feeha 7aga dafya”… Let’s get real!

Sitting in the packed theater as the movie “3asal eswed” started, I started feeling claustrophobic; after all, I am not used to going to the movies on my own and having strangers sitting on the seat right next to me, usually, I have an empty seat when I go solo. My claustrophobia was then paired with a complete feeling of alienation as people started seeing humor in what I saw as nothing short of BS, or for lack of a better word: “esfaf”

Honestly, the movie addresses some real and serious issues in our society such as poor education (particularly the teaching methodology of the English language), unemployment, hypocrisy, abuse of power, lack of opportunities to a good life, and of course favoritism towards all that’s foreign on the account of all that’s Egyptian. All of which are very important issues, ones that could have been addressed and even deserved to be addressed in a more serious way while maintaining the sarcasm and the dark sense of humor of the movie.

I don’t know about the scriptwriter and the director, but I have seen and dealt with my fair share of Egyptians who were born and raised abroad, and I think “Masry Sayed Al Araby” persona is nothing but an unrealistic and rather shallow personification… why? Because most of those people may not speak that “fluent” Arabic, but they are definitely not that gullible to the extent that they do not know the exchange rate! Yes, they might not get our inside jokes and figures of speech, but they can always catch the hint of such and know when someone is using the famous Egyptian sense of humor to make a point; they’re not entirely clueless. That part was only very briefly portrayed when “Masry” finally received his American passport the first time around.

Oh, and before I forget, the escalation of events lacked substance and structure to a considerable extent… no one would fail to recognize a public demonstration and say “ana ma3aya passport amricani wa2dar 2ady ay 7ad bel gazma” come on, it’s common sense… no one said comedy has to be absurd. And seriously, after having all his money, his cell phone, and his American passport stolen that day, they were miraculously left at the USA Embassy security gate… la wel ne3ma!!!

Another scene that pissed me off although I get that it was supposed to be the part that prepared you to the “moral of the story”, the one with Youssef Dawood telling “Masry” off for stating the mere facts as he uncovered Egypt bitter truth. “3am Helal” linked misery with faith!!! He assumed that the west, or in that case, the American society lacked the warmth and the patience acquired by having faith the good Egyptian people have in facing all the hardships life throws at them. Ha2olha tany LA WEL NE3MA!! Or was he just talking about that kind simple family that hosted “Masry”, because other than that, starting with all the police officer, the service provider representatives, the driver, and the government employee those people lacked ethics, faith eh bas ya 7ag wa7ed rabbak!!

Nonetheless, I did like that “3am Rady” had a “masry gada3” inside of him, and I liked the symbolism that even the most scoundrel like Egyptian had something good within him, but it’s really REALLY hard to believe in that notion when you’re constantly robbed, bullied, and abused in this country.

I cannot deny that there are good Egyptians out there who give you that sense of warmth the movie kept talking about and eventually left me with a faint sense thereof. However, let’s face it, in reality, the bad ones have more influence and they definitely ruin the general feel, just like at the end of the movie, “Masry” had to use his American passport to have the flight return to Egypt (which we all know is unrealistic)…

I like what the movie tried to be, and there is something about Ahmed Helmy that is heartfelt, but I think he didn’t put it to its best use in this one. Oh, by the way, Edward is not a bad actor, he has potential, just needs more effort.

Trivia: the first thing that made me burst with laughter during the movie was when the GPS (aka “novogator”) kept saying “pyramids” while parked at Cairo Tower.

~ by insomniac on June 14, 2010.

9 Responses to ““feeha 7aga dafya”… Let’s get real!”

  1. The scene that cracked was the “cilass” scene.
    The other thing that is not realistic at all.. that when he lost his american passport and went to the embassy and they cant do anything about it.. Howcome?????

    • aywa aywa, “kilaaas” de kanet mo2lema… i liked that too, bas de kanet fe nos el film, my trivia mentioned awel 7aga da7aketny :)

      yeah, el 7abka for the escalation of events kanet feeha noo3 men anwa3 el estehza2 be 3aqleyet el moshahed… bas 3ady ya3ne, maho el sha3b 3agbo el film without paying attention to any of those details… actually bey2ollak “komedya”… bas to me comedy is more refined than that… 3ala ra2y my friend, 3ashan ana “met2an3ara”

  2. MMM.. I loved the movie, you know. But let me tell you one thing. The scene where Youssef Dawood gives him the lecture of saying “ElhamdolAllah” and don’t move on but merely survive portrays everything I hate about this country. Although the movie wants to say “elbalad di a7san men ghrha”, the message wasn’t communicated properly. The sentiment I was left with was… why stay when you can go out and do something or be someone?

    • yeah, he said it like it was a positive thing, like it was a sign of faith not pathetic surrendering… he said it like it made better people out of those who desperately endure!!!!

      and i hate the “el balad de a7san men gherha” notion… because we are only “a7san” compared to what? el qaba2el elly fe magahel africa!!! why do we not dare compare ourselves to those who are “better”, why do we not strive for more??

      perhaps that was your sentiment ya Mayo, bas “Masry” actually chose to go back to this country, and he used the American passport to make it happen, i get the ultimate irony! but how many would actually choose to return???

  3. Inso, one simple Question: Seriously is the movie categorized to be comedy? 3ashan begad for me it was drama. It has this idea of patriotism but not very well executed. It wasn’t one of Helmy’s best movies to me.

    yet i was laughing out loud on the “Kilass” scene… w 2alk el “jakyeeet”… w howa dah elly mewady el 3eyal fe dahya!

    • actually, the movie was a failed attempt of a comedy and a failed attempt of a drama… yes, helmy has done better, and i also think the movie could have been much better…

      but yeah, el “enta ezzay tekte7em 3alaya el killaas” wel “fistiere” w “fisitor” that girl knows how to speak egyptian teachers’ english!

  4. leah w ra7et feen “Fery Mutch!”

  5. “La2 estana howa ento bet2olohaa ezayy… estana… aywa Beee2aaaa! Mervat ba2et Bee2aa! w te2oly mesh hatfakar feek”

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