The Closed Doors
Director: Atef Hetata, Egypt 1999, 105 min., Arab. with En. ST
Mon 16/4/18 | 19:00 | Arsenal *
* If online tickets are sold out, please check at the cinema counter for available tickets.
Atef Hetata’s (son of the Egyptian writer and feminist activist Nawal El Saadawi) feature film debut takes place in Egypt at the time of the first Gulf War. Hamada, shy and in the midst of puberty, lives with his divorced mother Fatma (Sawsan Badr), a housemaid to a rich family in Cairo. He spies on girls at his school, whereas his classmates and authoritarian teachers exclude and beat the sensitive student. The mosque seems to be the only place, where he experiences some form of education and solidarity. Hamada faces the economic destabilization of his society and his awaking sexuality with an increasing religiosity that even makes the Oedipal relationship to his mother collapse. The multilayered film tells the drama of an adolescent who seeks a male role model for his guidance but finds only shades of a dysfunctional patriarchal society.