University celebrates Egyptian cinema

The University is helping to support the annual Middle Eastern Film Festival, which runs from 12 February to 1 March.

The theme of this year’s festival is Egyptian cinema and it is being hosted by the Edinburgh Filmhouse cinema.

The Egyptian film industry has consistently produced works of international significance, often against the background of political censorship.

The showcase includes Kamal Selim’s Determination, which established the realist tradition, as well as Henri Barakat’s The Nightingale’s Prayer.

Movie master class

As part of the two-week series, the Egyptian filmmaker Ibrahim El Batout will give a master class on his interest in human stories.

He will explain how he weaves them into his documentary and fiction work.

The festival also offers a one-day workshop on the history of the nation’s cinema. This will be hosted by Dr Walter Armbrust of the University of Oxford.

The programme also contains films from other regions of the Middle East, including the uplifting Iranian comedy Song of the Sparrows.

Two documentaries will also be included - from Lebanon, The One Man Village, and from Turkey, On the Way to School.

There are also three films on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict:

  • A powerful drama on the impact of the Israeli occupation, Pomegranates and Myrrh;
  • A lighter look at the impact of the occupation, Laila’s Birthday, starring Mohamed Bakri;
  • An inspiring documentary on a musical collaboration between cultures, Knowledge is the Beginning.

The festival is supported by the British Council, Screen Academy Scotland and the University’s department of Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies.

Event details

Middle Eastern Film Festival

Friday 12 February 2010, 12.00am

Monday 1 March 2010, 12.00am

Filmhouse Cinema

Find the Filmhouse Cinema on Google maps