Youssef Chahine retrospective: Al-Asfour (The Sparrow) Friday

Ahram Online, Friday 12 Sep 2014

Cairo's arthouse cinema Zawya is hosting a week-long retrospective on legendary Egyptian director Youssef Chahine; follow details of the films daily on Ahram Online

The Sparrow
Still from The Sparrow by Youssef Chahine

On Friday, the third day of a week-long retrospective on one of Egypt's most influential filmmakers, the late Youssef Chahine, Zawya art house cinema will screen the 1972 production Al-Asfour (The Sparrow).

An Arab melodrama set in the backdrop of the 1967 war, Chahine uses familial strife to examine a disillusioned nation. The Sparrow follows a farmer, his troubled son - a policeman trying to unveil the corruption of the state - and grandson, who is struggling under the father's restrictions. The return of the patriarch's younger son from prison provides an explosive charge to the tense status quo.

The Sparrow is considered one of Chahine's most controversial films due to its negative treatment of Gamal Abdel-Nasser's regime, especially in reference to the 1967 defeat by Israel.

The film's screenplay was co-written by poet and songwriter Salah Jahine, who also wrote the score.

Chahine was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Cannes film festival I n1997. He passed away in 2008.

Tonight's screening will be followed by a discussion by the film's actors Seif El-Din and Mohsena Tawfik, along with AUC professor Malek Khoury who published the book The Pan Arab Project in the Cinema of Youssef Chahine.

Zawya launched in March 2014 and is run by Misr International Films, the film company founded by Chahine himself.

The Sparrow is set to start at 6.30pm at Zawya
Odeon Cinema, 4 Abdel-Hamid Said Street, off Talaat Harb Street, downtown Cairo.




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