Yomeddine (Judgement Day), Egyptian filmmaker Abu Bakr Shawky’s debut – selected for participation in the official competition at 71st Cannes Film Festival (8-19 May) – reportedly made an impression on its screening, with a long standing ovation for the Shawky and his wife, the film’s producer, Dina Imam.
Yomeddine is a road trip film tracing the journey of a middle-aged man named Beshay (Rady Gamal) who, having recovered from leprosy, is searching for any remaining member of his family. It is the first Egyptian film to participate in the official competition at Cannes since Youssry Nasrallah’s After the Battle (2012).
Shawky’s first film Al-Mostaamara (The Colony, 2009), a 15-minute documentary on one of Egypt’s leper colonies, was followed by The Road to Atalia (2010) and Martyr Friday (2011).
This round of Cannes also features a screening of Youssef Chahine’s Al-Massir (Destiny, 1997), which premiered in the official competition.
With a jury that includes Cate Blanchett, the competition features 18 films: At War by Stépane Brizé, Burning by Lee Chang-Dong, Everybody Knows by Asghar Farhadi, Dogman by Matteo Garrone, The Image Book by Jean-Luc Godard, Asako I & II by Ryûsuke Hamaguchi, Sorry Angel by Christophe Honoré, Girls of the Sun by Eva Husson, Shoplifters by Hirokazu Kore-eda, Capernaum by Nadine Labaki, BlacKkKlansman by Spike Lee, Under the Silver Lake by David Robert Mitchell, Three Faces by Jafar Panahi, Cold War by Pawel Pawlikowski, Lazzaro Felice by Alice Rohrwacher, Summer by Kirill Serebrennikov, Ash is Purest White by Jia Zhangke and Yomeddine.
This article was first published in Al Ahram Weekly
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