July 2012

Issue N° 2

International Cinematic E-Magazine


Asian Cinemas: Different Cultures, Different Stories

Contact us: c.cinematic@gmail.com



International Cinematic E-Magazine
1. Foreword : Dr. Laura HILLS 2. Brutality and Gritty Social Realism in the South-Korean Silenced {2011} 3. Kurbaan : A Dark Asian Reflection
of Muslims 4. Morocco Bound To Hindi Cinema 5. Iran: Women, Films and A
Separation 6. Why Has the Indian Cinema
Emotionally Attracted the Moroccan Spectator ? 7. Commentary on Little Birds of
Happiness 8. Castaway on the Moon : A Crash Course in Surviving Just About Anything: 9. The Front Line as a Symbolic Text 10.Dialogue or War Between Images 10. Interview: Actress Lilia Cuntapay and Director Antoinette Jadaone 11. Turkish Drama on Arab Television: Reasons for the Continuing Success 12. Fresh New Wave: New Film Voices
The ultimate goal has been to create a virtual space where ink can be spilt from different walks of thought and analyses in approaching the World Cinemas. Being ambitious enough, Seminars, Study Days and other academic meetings and activities will be held with the aim of bringing together critics, film-makers, researchers, actors, actresses among many others to ponder over issues related to Cinema and Film-industry .Different national and international Festivals shall be covered. New films will be reviewed as well. New contributors and commentators are invited to have their say on I.C.M. For further information, please contact us at: c.cinematic@gmail.com


Cinema is like holding mirrors to societies as it turns them into stereographic spaces where a wide range of roads are often left untraveled yet. Hence, studying cinemas of different countries and continents results in having windows of various types opened on different cultures and civilizations.

Run by a host of Moroccan student researchers being interested in Cinematographic and Film Studies, International Cinematic E-Magazine (ICM) is a quarterly E-Magazine; open to all the World Cinemas and different Schools of thought. Each Newsletter will be dedicated to a particular cinema.

13. Japanese Anime & the Child’s Sub-conscious 14. A Separation Movie: A Milestone in Persian Cinema 15. Silenced: Voiceless Resistance in the Age of New Media
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Thinking Globally about Filmmaking
Dr. Laura Hills President, Blue Pencil Institute Fairfax, Virginia, USA
Inte rnat ion E-M al Cine agaz mat ic ine

Like it or not, we have been conditioned to think of film through a nationalistic lens. Most of us classify the films we see into two basic categories: films that are from our own country, and films that are from foreign countries. Awards ceremonies such as the Academy Awards in the United States or the César Awards in France in fact make this distinction. Is it our film? Is it a foreign film? We define a category, put a film into it, and keep it there. However, our comfortable and familiar nationalistic lines become blurred when we experience films that are created through international collaborations. Take for instance The Artist, the highly-acclaimed and award-winning modern-era silent film of 2011. The Artist was made in the United States. Filming took place during seven weeks on location in Los Angeles, California. And indeed, some of the members of the cast and crew were Americans. To many film lovers, this would suggest that The Artist is an American film. However, The Artist starred French actor Jean Dujardin and Argentine-French actress Bérénice Bejo. It was directed by French film director Michel Hazanavicius. Its music

was composed by French composer Ludovic Bource. And some of the additional actors and members of the crew were French. So, is The Artist a French film? Well, the answer will depend upon who you ask. As you read International Cinematic Magazine, and as you continue to study film, be mindful that many hands go into film-making and that our films often draw c a s t a n d c r e w m e m b e r s f ro m a n international pool of talent. That means that we need to be a little less rigid in our nationalistic thinking and a lot more open to the idea of a global cinema. Whether a cast or crew member, composer, director, producer, or screenwriter comes from your country or from mine, what matters to film lovers like us is the quality of what we experience on the screen. If The Artist is an example of what can happen when we have international collaboration in filmmaking, then let’s hope we see many more such collaborations across our borders and shores. It is wonderfully exciting to see diverse people come together from different lands, languages, and cultures to create a film.

Dr. Laura Hills is the

president of Blue Pencil Institute and serves as the Research Fellow for Academic Development at Virginia International University in Fairfax, Virginia, USA. Dr. Hills invites you to follow her on Twitter @DrLauraHills, to become a fan of company on Facebook at Blue Pencil Institute, and to visit the Blue Pencil Institute website at www.bluepencilinstitute. com.

International Cinematic E-Magazine, | c.cinematic@gmail.com



Brutality and Gritty Social Realism in the South-Korean Silenced {2011}
disturbing shrieks through the dark stiffening terror. corridors at night; and becoming aware of gruelling acts of violent punishment 'Silenced' is a conscience-burdening perpetrated by most of the school's staff film. The morally-repugnant atrocities and apathetically ignored by the rest. would be enough to claim the film With the help of a human rights implausible, had they not been rooted activist, Kang begins a difficult battle in reality. The inhumane, ignorant and Antoniya Petkova with forces more powerful than himself, i n d i f f e r e n t o f fi c i a l s a n d t h e but also with his own guilt-ridden preposterous phantom justice in the conscience, making the hard choice face of gruelling abuse is repugnant

• • •

It is impossible to experience between helping strangers or turning a and unnerving, and this is a feeling that 'Silenced' without flinching. The winner blind eye to atrocities for the sake of lasts long after the credits roll. Unimaginable deeds are ignored of the Udine Far East Film Festival providing for his own ill daughter. Audience Award for Best Film is a deeply disturbing film, rooted in the because of personal favours or bribes of 'Silenced' is thoroughly disturbing and corrupt authorities, and the audience harsh reality of ignorant apathy and at times too brutal. The director does desperately prays for a happy ending. phantom justice. Although surpassed by not shy away from the difficult scenes – But such never arrives – in the heartless other productions in many aspects and instead, he graphically emphasises justice system, where responsibility is far from particularly stunning, engaging them, sending shivers all over one's thrown from one to the other, the or brilliant, Hwang Dong-hyuk's film is body until their feet are numb. Kwang absurdity and ugliness of the world we one of explicit graphic brutality which utilises genre conventions that provide inhabit become evident, and just when leaves a sense of utter disturbance and g r i t t y r e a l i s m a n d a n a l m o s t one is ready to exhale a sigh of relief, inconvenience and makes for a unique supernatural air of evil and remind of the brutal reality takes over all hope. traditional noir productions, particularly feeling of personal attachment. in the opening sequence, as Kang Based on a novel account of actual arrives in the sombre misty town of events, 'Silenced' depicts the severe Mujin, while a young boy slowly walks reality of sexual abuse and physical on the train tracks facing an upcoming violence of disabled children in a train. From that moment, the viewer is paralysing tingling specially-adjusted deaf school in Korea. engulfed in As the novice teacher Kang In-ho numbness all throughout the film, even begins his adjustment to the school, he a s i t fl o w s i n t o a c o u r t r o o m grows suspicious of the children's environment, which is seemingly easier withdrawn behaviour and seeming to consume. And if the graphically ignorance of the staff. He soon explicit exposés of violence and sexual becomes witness to a range of immoral abuse do not suffice, Kwang add a deeds: being forced into unwilling p a i n f u l c o m b i n at i o n o f ch i l d ' s financial contributions; overhearing innocence, frailty, resilience and
This contribution was produced as official coverage of the Udine FEFF 14 as part of the Coventry University East Asian Film Society (CUEAFS)



: A Dark Asian Reflection of Muslims
I JAHD com m LAM mjahdi@gmail. Ahla .la : ahlam E-mail
Kurbaan is a very successful Indian movie released in 2009. Saif Ali khan, originally a Muslim actor, as his name suggests, belongs to the Khan family plays in the movie the role of ‘Ihsan’ who is a young and a handsome university professor in Delhi. Kareena Kapoor, a Hindu actress, professionally presents the character of Avantika, a young and a beautiful girl who lives in the United States and who decides to return to Delhi to stay with her father for a while. The story might seem a romantic realm in which Avantika, a Hindu [7] professor, and Ihsan, a Muslim University teacher, enjoy their love and passion. Still, that love between the two narrates a different story in which misrepresentations of Muslims remain the biggest headline. Kurbaan was directed by Rensil D'Silva  who keeps stating that the film intersperses philosophical arguments over the corruption of religious beliefs in an attempt to 'rectify' the damage to Muslims world-over. The film is, apparently, another onslaught on Muslims. Kurbaan cleverly and subtly misshapes any remaining good images about Muslims in the minds of non-Muslims audiences. It strongly reinforces the different stereotypes about a Muslim. The latter is represented, though in a hidden way, as evil, manipulative, lustful, and most of all, terrorist. The way “Ihsan”, the Muslim symbol, is drawn is extremely the opposite of the way Avantika is moulded.

Avantika, the Hindu symbol, is represented as a young, confident, kind and beautiful girl who has pure intentions and clear ambitions in life. She is, seemingly, well educated, peaceful and open to the various differences existing between people in the universe. She is educated enough, as the film tries to imply, to accept a Muslim man to become her lifetime partner. The audience might believe that Avantika is in fact an angel living on earth due to her kindness, purity, and honesty. The way the character of Avantika appears in Kurbaan is very telling. The heroin of the movie might be taken as a reflection of diverse Hindu principles, ethics and beliefs since her character is, professionally, drawn to reflect the cruelty, the injustice and the oppression of her husband Ihsan. Thus, It might be said here that both Rensil D'Silva, director of the movie, and Karan Johan, writer and producer of Kurbaan, were clever enough to create several oppositions between the Hindu and the Muslim cultures. Those oppositions were subtly developed to serve certain agendas. Ihsan, the Muslim symbol, is represented as a stylish, modern, and educated professor who works in delhi. But, it seems that Ihsan’s education does not prevent him from becoming a terrorist. The character is, supposedly, an intelligent, well-trained terrorist who does not possess any ethics which might awaken his conscience, and which might stop him from manipulating, lying, abusing, and killing innocent people. He, remorselessly, uses Avantika’s love to legally become an American citizen. Ironically, the movie seems to adopt the oldfashioned views about Muslims since Ihsan is, as it is presented in the movie, a lust-oriented man who remains unable to resist his passion towards Avantika. The way a Muslim is pictured in the movie is not delighting. Still, not to look so unjust in their narration, Karan and Rensil shed some light on how a Muslim should be, should act, and should become traits symbolized by Riyaz, a peaceful Muslim citizen in America, who is furiously against what Ihsan labels as ‘Jihad’, and who fights to save America. Muslim women’s representation in Kurbaan is, ironically, identical to those excessive images produced by Western media about women in Islam and Muslim communities. Muslim women are, according to Rensil and Karan, as their movie may tell, forced to wear the veil, forced to stay at home, and forced to serve their husbands. They are, apparently, silent machines who do not enjoy any kind of freedom since they do not have the right to express themselves, to work, to go out without permission, or even to speak. Their relationship with their husbands is cold, lacking love, and communication. Muslim women are represented in Kurbaan as toys or slaves who exist only to satisfy their husbands’ sexual desires, and their husbands’ need for a servant. They are, undoubtedly, a clear embodiment of what Gayatri Spivak once described as ‘Subalterns’. In a nutshell, one can say here that Muslim women’ representation seems to be the opposite of Avantika’s. The latter is a free woman who enjoys the different rights of being a human. The opposition made between Avantika and her Muslim neighbors cannot be considered as simple differences found between two women, but it is apparently an opposition that is made between two realms, and a clear drawn decisive line between two worlds, two cultures, and two religions; one is Hindu, and the other is Muslim. The different dark images found in Kurbaan might seem provocative for some, and rational for others. As a viewer, one may wonder about the extent to which the movie can be taken as a reflection of the Muslim reality. To what extent can Kurbaan be considered as an innocent production made for entertainment or as a blind attempt to distort the different religious beliefs existing in Islam such as the veil, and the conception of ‘Jihad’? Max Horkheimer and Theodor Adorno (1944) state in “The culture industry: Enlightenment as mass deception” that media is able to create what they describe as ‘false consciousness’. The latter is the different false beliefs one might be convinced to adopt through the media which is able to build various types of consciousness that might be false. What I am aiming to say here is that Rensil ‘s and Karan’s movie might be considered as a typical demonstration of Horkheimer’s and Adorno’s theory of ‘false consiousness’ since both, Rensil and Karan, seem to be convinced of what they were taught by the Western media.


International Cinematic E-Magazine

Mr. El ALLAOUI Allal
E-mail: allalcinema@gmail.com

Morocco Bound to Hindi Cinema
Indian Cinema has always been loved by Moroccan cinemagoers and bollyphiles and even since its early start with legendary Dhundiraj Govind Phalke (1870 - 1944) affectionately called Dadasaheb Phalke is considered as the 'father of Indian Cinema'. Central in Phalke's career as a filmmaker was his fervent belief in the nationalistic philosophy of Swadeshi, which advocated that Indians should take charge of their own economy in the perspective of future Independence. This was confirmed to me by the most respected filmmaker Yash Shopra, who was in Marrakech in 2006 with his wife, Pa m e l a S h o p r a . G o i n g a ro u n d Marrakeshi souks and suburbs especially the Jamaa el Fna square, Yash Shopra said how amazed and astonished he was by the Moroccan people and its traditions that really have great affinity with the ones in India. Both India and Pakistan Should be grateful for the symbolic union that gathers these two countries through VEERZAARA By Yash Shopra.It is an outstanding drama which tries to break the barriers separating two lovers, Veer Patra Sing (Shahrukh kan) and a Pakistani woman, Zarma Hayaat Khan (Preity Zinta). When he projected his film at Berlin film festival, Yash Shopra was scared that the people would not understand the story, however, at the end of the film, he saw people crying. The presence of Aishwarya Rai in Marrakesh, a former Miss World and Bollywood’s first genuine cross-over icon, lightened Marrakech with her beauty and let all Marrakeshi young men eyes wild open. These artists are well honored by the Moroccan people and FIFM, the international film festival in Marrakesh. Morocco now became known in Mumbai and the majority of Bollywood stars would love to come to this country.

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International Cinematic E-Magazine Issue N° 2 July 2012


Not far from Agadir, Las Palmas, a Spanish little island, is overcrowded with Indians and enjoyed the double culture there. Indians have immigrated to every corner of the globe with contingencies in South Africa, the Gulf countries, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand, US, Canada apart from the UK. Wherever the Indians go, their films and their food go with them. With curry and chutney now international favourite foods, it was inevitable that their exotic films, their melodies, the romantic strains of their sitar, the striking beauty of their leading ladies and the dark and daring magnetism of their dashing heroes would eventually reach the hearts of the West despite all of Rudyard Kipling's poetic protests, reports Lubna Abdel Aziz, from Cairo Al Ahram weekly. Of course, he did not know then the strength and might of the Seventh Art, which proved to be the best meeting ground for East, West, North and South.

makes local cinephiles more aware about Indian cinema power as a using his wonderful plume .He

Ideas like creating an agency that deals only with Bollywood films and Wizcraft artistic communications becomes a wish not only for Razak, but also for myself. I think as Bollywood will celebrate its 100 years of cinema in Marrakech next autumn, it is time to sit down, discuss and debate in professional meetings about film distributers, producers and filmmakers andtackle mechanism of producing Bollywood movies in Morocco. From this contest, I have already launched a weblog named Hollywood-Bollywood peace initiative in which mega-stars of the west and the east can be together, may be in Morocco , to unite our world in peace and joy.

writes how exquisite , beautiful and magnificently arising and yet g l o r i f y i n g w o rl d w i l d H i n d i cinema  is. He also predicted in his RABAT EXPRESS newspaper that «  BLACK  » of Sanjay Leela Bhansali with Amitabh Bachchan and Rani Mukherjee as best actor and actress, would win an Oscar in Dubai during IIFA film festival the year of 2006.His prophecy became true in the United Arab of Emirates last June during IIFA ceremony in Dubai. By the way, the Arab world is also fascinated by this genre of C i n e m a  . W h e n e v e r y o u g o , Bollywood movies prevail in popular theatres, for example, Cairo, Casablanca and Dubai cinemas are full with Bollywood fans, and you can hardly find your ticket. Now resourcefully, people in Mumbai l i s t e n c a re f u l l y t o E u ro p e a n cinephiles who admire latest of Sanjay Leela Bhansali  «  BLACK  » because simply of its new style without using songs and exotic scenes.

Many critics in Morocco would immediately judged Indian cinema as an emotional cinema which only seeks impossible love, and therefore damages the taste with its chosen six songs and pharonic scenes and yet praised and admired by others just like Razak, a Hindu fan and film critic who is illuminated by its new wave , independent anti-studio cinema , pioneered by Madhur Bhandarkar .Razak continuously


In a land where, acting is categorized as a decadent cultural practice; actors are forced to unreasonable conformity and women actors follow the Islamist edict of maintaining the stringent code of conduct; it is an avant-garde to make cinema portraying real Iran. Iran’s film industry is known for its strife against the fundamentalism and the ever-changing decree related to the depiction of women affairs in socio-cultural limitations. If we look at the history of women actors in Iran; theirs is the most deplorable position. The societal norms albeit stern and contentious; filmmakers are driven more by a strong passion, to make cinema a medium to voice their apprehensions in the muddled state. Even today, the appearance of uncovered women on screen is strictly forbidden. A woman’s interaction with men other than husband, father, brother and son is not allowed. Under this overbearing religious dogma, making a full length cinema featuring women is a difficult job. The filmmakers’ skills lie in following a non-confrontational narrative style of expression. Female characters were however bound by the persisting religious and social demands. Their characters are restricted to secondary roles.  Even through the secondary characters; mainly that of mothers, sisters and wives, women were unable to depict their part realistically, owing to laws that limit their interaction with men, both in real life and on screen. Even the slightest idea of suggestive sexual attraction was considered decadent and threatening; and hence got omitted in most of the cases. However, few filmmakers have succeeded in rising above the limitations and providing women with well written characters.

e-mail: bijin19@gmail.com

Bijin José

films. It is astonishing to see that in a nation which is still driven by religious fanaticism, filmmakers are attempting to make remarkable films conforming to the obstinate laws that govern it.  Iran as a nation has frequently witnessed movements struggling for women rights. In a circumstance where, women are debarred from expressing themselves, cinema seems to be a practice; especially a respite to the prevalent rules that demarcate women’s existence. If we observe; the recent times have made cinema a yardstick to measure the social, political, cultural and economical progress in Iran. The filmmakers through their innovative depiction and portrayal of realism in an innocuous manner have made their voices heard, and also at the same time kept the moral watchdogs at bay. Women characters on screen are evidently entangled between the intertwining state regulations and


  A Separation by Asghar Farhadi is winning rave reviews across the globe. The film which portrays the predicament of a middle class Iranian family at the verge of annulment has won immense acclaim and prestigious recognitions from critics and viewers alike. The latest achievement to the films credit is the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film 2012. The film is a representation of the conflicts between hope and the dismay that clouds the present life of the lead characters. It begins with a colossal disappointment in the marital life of two young middle class Iranians, Nader and Simin.  It is a stark imagery of the current social, economical, and cultural scenario in Iran. Simin bears the responsibility of the well being of the family and wants them to move out of Iran to provide a bright future to her 12 year old daughter Teremeh. Her husband, Nader, disapproves the idea of fleeing Iran for a better place; he reasons his disapproval of the flight with the degenerating condition of his old father afflicted by Alzheimers. The couple separates; leaving the daughters life in a disjointed situation. A Separation  implicitly depicts the abject realities of life. The gulf that divides the privileged and the underprivileged is shown in the light of a disagreement. Simin, while leaving her husband’s home hires a home maid, Razieh who is 3 months pregnant. Razieh takes care of her Simin’s husband’s home, which also has her ailing father-in-law, and her daughter. On Razieh’s first day at Nader’s house; she is duty-bound to clean the old man who urinated in his pants. Before doing so, Razieh – perplexed and apprehensive, like any other woman would have been in her position; calls up a cleric, to confirm whether it was unlawful of her to clean a “na-mahram”(a man other than, husband, brother, father and son). This particular scene evokes the moral dilemma during the time of adversity; the film has several scenes, where we come across the confrontation between the two impossible choices - between religious ethics and humanism. As the film progresses, a certain unpleasant event compels Nader to push the home maid out of the house, causing an injury that results in an abortion. This results in a chain of events. The film is an intense narrative, which needs the viewers full focus to decipher the intricacies that this thriller, if it can be called so, poses. Regardless of the intense narrative, the film also highlights an array of social issues. The major themes in the film are family loyalty, religion, economical inequality, migration, class division, and troubledrelations. The film also in a way satirizes the much debated “veiling of women”. It subtly evokes the irrationality behind the dress code. This is pretty evident when the protagonist claims his ignorance to the fact that the home maid was pregnant, and this he attributes to the  chador(fabric to cover the body, similar to purdah), which makes it difficult to determine the physical traits of a pregnant woman.  The Koran is a re-occurring aspect, as the victim of the crime is a deeply religious woman, who experiences a conflict between moral imperatives at various junctures in the film. Farhadi’s A Separation, doesn’t boast of technical brilliance or a phenomenal cinematography, as most of the film seems to be shot under hand held cameras. The unsteadiness of the camera shots particularly adds to the mystifying effect that this intense film exudes. All the actors have been exceptionally gifted when it came to depicting their complex yet realistic characters with ease and utmost conviction.



Why Has the Indian Cinema Emotionally Attracted the Moroccan Spectator ?


Ghandi once said “The United States of America is powerful because of both: Hollywood and the Central Intelligence Agency CIA.“
With the programmation of the Film “ My Name is Khan “ in Jamaa Lafna square in conjuction with the showing of the Film “The She-Lover of Rif “, the fourth film produced by Narjis Anajar, at the conference Palace, the I n t e r n a t i o n a l F i l m Fe s t i v a l o f Marrakech marked its inaugural opening in two ways: official and popular . At the popular level, the Indian actor Charu Khan moved to Jamaa Lafna square where he was given a warm reception .This was obviously manifest in the way the audience interacted with Images speak louder than news. In an interview On Aljazeera , the senior Egyptian journalist Mohamed Hasanin Haikal said that the Indian leader Mahatma Ghandi once told him, “The United States of America is powerful because of both: Hollywood and the Central Intelligence Agency CIA.“ This statement showed the extent of the Indian great leader’s awareness of the role of the Film industry in the political influence of states. This awareness made for the appearance of Bollywood, which made India more known worldwide. It is true that resources are not the same, but imagination is worth more than the Dollar. The evidence is the fact that Bollywood has competed Hollywood for a long period of time in many film markets. “My Name is Khan” ranked among the [13] widely seen films seen in many Western countries. In Morocco, Indian films have also enjoyed a big number of spectators either when the number of the tickets sold in cinema halls reached 40 million tickets annually, or now thanks to/ because of piracy. The Indian cinema forum took part in the warm reception of Charu Khan. As such, Indian Cinema has contributed strongly to shaping the conscience of the Moroccan youth for several decades. In fact, there were halls that used to show only Indian and Karate films. But, it was only the Indian film which succeeded in impacting the sentiments of the youth. This is why Amitabachan and later Charukhan were both welcomed warmly in Marrakech.

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him and showed the extent of the audience.


All this is justified by the fact that the Indian film is marked by the following characteristics:
1 – An understandable story that consists of no complications – a popular story with overflowing emotions, and this is due to the accumulation of an ancient oral narrative heritage, from which the stories of Kalila Wa Dimna originally stemmed and which were translated from Indian into Persian then Arabic. By all means, the film is in particular a narration. 2 – A story that consists of both romance and revenge. Romance in the field, not in bed, and this is compatible with public abashment. 3 – A functional direction in that the director is more concer ned with nar rating and making the stor y understandable than playing with the camera and creating new frames. The director alternates between big frames of faces and general frames focusing on the green scenery in the fields of sunflowers. 4 – Shooting in spaces that would encourage the spectators to travel to India after watching its movies. 5 – A clear-cut characterization based on the distinction between good characters and evil ones to the extent that it looks sometimes simplistic. This helps the viewers differentiate between

just and unjust figures and satisfies their expectations of true justice. 6 – Songs and dances are so designed as to serve the story and show the contact between the hero and the heroine. 7– Very attractive and handsome actors who the eye enjoys watching and interacting with. In the cinema, “beauty “is considered as a principal standard for the standing of the actor before the camera. The eyes of the audience love “beauty “ 8 – A romantic and unshakeable assured view of the world. Good is among people everywhere in the world, and we need only to look for. 9 – A dream that comes true as well as happy endings. This allows spectators to see their dreams, unfulfilled in reality, come true in films. 10 – A film of entertainment, thanks to the movements and dances performed by graceful bodies. 11 – A profound respect for collective conscience as well as other cultures. Thanks to these characteristics, the Indian Cinema has impressively achieved success that about fifty thousand people gathered in Jamaa Lafna square to greet Charu Khan.


Proof-reader of the text: Mr. BELBACHA Mohamed


International Cinematic E-Magazine Issue N° 2 July 2012

Little Bird of Happiness
school director and headmaster. A surely mother fell down the terrace uncommunicative loner, living a solitary into a small pool. Maliha was sitting right existence, has not made even one single next to her mother. She witnessed the tragic passing grade in the exam of the first term. scene looking at her mother’s dead body all In her father’s eyes, she caused him night. On his return, Mr Sohraby finds his disgrace and shame. She is depicted by the wife dead in a mortuary and Maliha in a headmaster as the rude tardy girl that has hospital babbling and insane. to be expelled. In another teacher  ‘s view, she is a microbe disturbing the school and Maliha screams whenever it happens that her duty is to crush out such microbes. she meets any sign or object that is related

dealing with Maliha’s abnormality. Whether Mrs Shafik befriends Maliha till they Pooran  Derakhshandeh’s Little Bird of at school or outside it, Mrs Shafik is the only become fond of each other. Visiting a person who regularly talks to and cares Happiness is an educational film that pychiatrist, the latter unveils to the about Maliha. She is granted the role of struggles to introduce a new perspective and redirecting Maliha’s life in its hour of teacher that Maliha’s odd and violent conceptualizaion of school and society. It is maximum danger. The latter does not actions are explained as a revenge a movie whose action, armed with social escape such a huge responsibility. In Mrs against the world surrounding her. She re a l i t y, c a l l s ex p l i c i t l y fo r a n e w Shafik  ‘ s personality, high degrees of is in suspension between rationality and understanding entry into the individuality of sacrifice are mirrored. She brings a unsuccessful students. It is a brilliant and severe schizophrenia. Maliha’s collective forgotten child back to life. Her enrgy, faith impassioned examination of the role of memory forms a flashback of her mother’s and devotion are the weapons that she relies teachers in effecting historical change. terrible death; the reason why a system of on. substitution has to be exercised. With a broken leg, Maliha hits a classmate violently. The latter, unlike other students, refuses to write or read distracted as she seems all the time. Maliha’s violent deeds

E-mail: elaounib@hotmail.fr

Teachers , the administrative staff and to her mother’s death- the mousetrap, water, Maliha’s father show an imbalance in the pool and the like are some examples.

within the class push the new teacher ,Mrs Shafik, to interrogate the source of such misbehaviours. She puts Maliha’s behaviours under scrutiny in an attempt to recognize possible causes. The new teacher repeatedly observes
The director introduces us, through Maliha’s frequent flashbacks, to her

the child’s odd behaviours, including the mother’s death  ; on Maliha’s birthday, Mr. Sohraby, the father,was going out will to sit alone in the school yard and the act of collecting ants and roaches. for hunting. Though his wife begged
Maliha has become dumb, unsuccessful and him not to go out, he did so. At that violent the reason why an implicit enmity is night, and because of a mousetrap, the held towards her by either teachers or the


Mrs Shafik does flaming efforts to The director accepts the teacher’s accomplish the psychiatrist’s pieces of demand, and Maliha is given another advice. She spots Maliha’s signals that she chance to pass the exam though she is receives each time and she shapes a sort supposed to be excluded according to the of motherhood towards the beloved child school rules. Mrs Shafik’s moment of Maliha. Towards the end of the film, and triumph is achieved when Maliha’s because of a fire accident in Maliha’ s mental blocks are broken, and she starts house, an event similar to that of her speaking and writing. mother happens but with a different scenario. Mrs Shafik falls too in the pool but the director does not want to end up her life  ; she remains alive to substitute Maliha’s memorial system of death with that of life. She calls for Maliha, «my sweetheart, my daughter …come on … come to me …I have come to live you for ever». It is only here that Maliha pronounces two ter ms, which are respectively Mama and Papa. Although the film is primarly intended to set off the exposition of one single experience, it can be well studied and analized for the aesthetic techniques that are adequatelly utilized to juxtapose a unique educational experience. The sequence of events, clothes and the grey and black colours that are focused on are used to perfectly mirror and express the sides, be they internal or external, of actors. Little Bird of Happiness, in raising


Mrs Shafik brings Maliha gradually to an educational issue, helps not only accept schooling. The teacher convinces teachers but educationalists too to see and the school headmaster that behind recognize the interrelatedness between Maliha’s reluctance to study there are school, society and psychology. It is other social reasons not to be ignored. undeniable that the film is directly suited to generating discussion and criticism.









e-mail: bibig@att.net

Castaway on the Moon: A Crash Course in Surviving Just About Anything:

One would have to have been living on a desert island for the last five years not to know that global banksters, mortgage companies, and multinational corporate elites have destroyed the lives of millions around the world. “Castaway on the Moon,” a charming, latter day Robinson Crusoe-esque fairy tale of survival and redemption, jettisonsits penniless South Korean protagonist on “Kim’s Island,” an urban wasteland in the middle of Seoul’s Han River, leaving him to fend for himself, and leaving us inspired if not mesmerized by the challenges wrought by adversity. Despite being the victim of a head-spinning mortgage heist by Happy Cash Private Loans, the film tells us, there is nothing that love, ingenuity and a green thumb won’t fix. If we are bound for destruction, Castaway suggests, we might as well go down exerting effort, creativity and having a sense of humor.

suicide by jumping off a bridge into the turbid Hanbut failing to drown; he washes up on a sandy beach in the middle of the city. He staggers about, proclaims that “he can’t even die,” straightens his glasses, dries his cell phone on a rock, beckons a passing passenger ferry, makes a few emergency phone calls, and realizes his efforts are futile. His is a challenging, but not impossible, swim back to the miserable life he left. There is just one problem: he cannot swim. We soon realize there is no going back as he wastes his last cell phone calls onan exgirlfriend and on the telephone company, one of many, that had him literally drowning in debt to begin with. He asks himself, “ Am I a castaway?”


atic E-Magazine international Cinem

The film opens as the debt-ridden protagonist attempts

The answer is obvious: he is one of millions. Released in 2009, ten years after Japan’s asset price bubble’s collapse, and one year after the financial meltdown hit Wall Street, the film’s plot is, sadly, still relevant and will remain relevant for many years to come. Wherever banks and mortgage companies lured their prey into promises of the so-called good life, there are castaways whose lives are washed up. But “Castaway”does not linger on financial malfeasance or social injustice. It is a fairy tale. Like “Gilligan’s Island,” an American 60’s television series classic, a prosaic plot is rescued by exceptional acting, casting, and a humorous script which digs deep below the surface to discover the fertile, quirky pathology of its characters. Striving for the “good life” has made a mess of the castaway’s personal and professional life, but having survived his plunge into the waters of the Han; he finds a respite in solitude and soon begins to exhibit the brave, and in this case humorous, characteristics we require of a hero. He eats wild mushrooms – but spits them out, he catches fish – when they float up dead, and he climbs a tree to retrieve eggs from a bird’s nest – but slides down unsuccessfully. He fashions a house from a sunken tourist boat shaped like a duck. He plants corn that he grinds into flour from which he makes his beloved noodles. All is right with the world, until one day he discovers a bottle in the forest and realizes he is not alone. A message in the bottle lets him know that he is being watched.

In the second half of “Castaway,” we discover that the film is, in fact, a love story. Thus, our hero is being watched by the woman of his dreams who sends take-out noodles to the island, which he rejects, and cryptic messages, which he doesn’t reject. She, too, it turns out, is an obsessive, passionate mess. Another victim of Korea’s consumer culture, she is a sunstarved “shut in” who lives in a lightless room in her parent’s Seoul high-rise apartment, orders Chanel couture shoes on line, hoards cans of corn, creates a fictitious virtual character, and watches his every move on the island through her camera lens. She is a monochrome underwater flower blooming at fathomless depths below the sea. He is exposed to the elements, a newly-made savage who talks to a scarecrow by day, and is cradled each night in the womb of an amphibious plastic duck. Nature is an angry, merciless corpse in “Castaway” as a typhoon tears away the garden that our hero has created. Humanity is uncaring and immoral as an army of environmentalists arrive, then chase down and subdue our hero proclaiming the trash-filled island a “conservation area.” The river, meanwhile, is a serpent, though she does dredge up every type of consumer plastic item that our hero deigns to makes use of. The randomness of what floats up enlivens and enriches us if we are creative and have our wits about us. We can and must outwit the forces that put us in this mess to begin with. Unlike the bankers, we can do without our toys, and find equilibrium in chaos. But it’s all a heck of a lot easier if we are not alone, suggests Castaway. The relationship of the Castaway and the high-rise Queen is not a match made in heaven, but fabricated on earth from shards of broken-ness. Nothing is perfect, the film tells us, but at least we have the fantasy of one another to bank on. We are suspended between each character’s desperate search for equilibrium. She seeks an escape from the consumer shell in which she lives; he seeks to heal from the wounds inflicted by his culture. As observers, we are lulled into the dream: that everything will be alright if we can just find the “other” who understands our plight, who might just rescue us, not just from our predicament, but from ourselves.




‘The Front Line’ as a Symbolic Text

Mr. BARBOUCHI Limame e-mail: b.limame@yahoo.fr

Like any literary text, “The Front Line”1 offers a symbolic narrative canvas fraught with cultural and political histories and contradictions. This movie stops at one of the critical moments in the course of South-North Korean military conflict; a final military battle that was intended to “determine the [political] borders between the North and South.”2 However apparent its story may appear, its scenes ironically create some repressed, contradictory and unspeakable images in mind. This kind of ironies seems like gaps and breaches left by both the scenario-writer and the filmdirector for the viewer to read off. Given this understanding, the viewer’s task sounds difficult as the film, though long, opens a wide range of possible readings, but also time and space limitations here leave a little room but for

packing one’s reading into fewer words. At any rate, this paper would, in turn, offer one reading of those gaps and ironies. Based on such a reading, this piece of writing follows a line of reasoning that is intent on ascertaining the way in which “The Front Line” has succeeded in showing how politics remain “a dirty” game, so to speak. One way to unravel some aspects of such “a dirty” game is to make the unspeakable speak by touching upon some deliberately-repressed moments in the course of the film; moments from which this game gets its substance. While the first scene opens with a moment at which a popular demonstration demands for reunification of the two Koreas, the subsequent one images a military debate between the two parties on where to draw a demarcationline between the two countries.


_ “The Front Line” is a South-Korean film, written by Sang-yeon Park and directed by Jang Hun. This film was produced in 2011.




In like vein, another ‘strange’ scene explains the – the South Korean protagonist – meet, drink wine and extent to which politics, in its military practice, sometimes smoke cigarettes together while listening to the official decbecomes kind of a free-wrestling game.3 Strange it may appear, when the South Koreans took over the Aerok had lost and got it back, they discovered that the North Koreans took them and left, in turn, some matches and wine along with letters to be sent to their relatives on the other bank. This game of exchanging things goes on until the declaration of the end of the war. Towards the latter, Kim SuHyeok, the protagonist’s friend demands that “our enemy wasn’t commies, but the war was itself.” This declaration deserves no further comment in that it reveals how both troops would see the war in the battlefield as being a space Enemies of yesterday become friends today” as The Phi5 where human relationships develop out of antagonistic losophy of Sophocles in King Oedipus explains. moments. By the end of the film, which is conjunctural with the end of the war, the North Korean captain and KANG Taking it back to where it started, this paper, though focusing only on three scenes, has made an attempt to explain the way in which The Front Line’s scenes can be read as referential mobile networks made of ironies. In trying to examine those ironies, the endeavor was made above to stop at some moments that may escape one’s notice with the aim of digging bit enough in what might lie beyond the scenes. Hill4, laration of the end of the war. This scene would open a wide door for different interpretations; one may be that

some of them buried chocolates and cigarettes. After they such a scene draws from the dictum that reads thus: “The

2 3 4 5

- For further details, see http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2007387/ , last visit 25th July 2012 at 03 p.m. - For further details on the notion of politics as a dirty game, see Lewis Rothschild’s , The American President, statements,1995. - This is the geographical entity around which the whole battle is taking place between the two Koreas. -Further details are available at: http://www.bookrags.com/essay-2005/3/29/161632/826, last visit July 25th, 2012 at 10 a.m.





Dialogue Or War Between Images
By Azzedine El OUAFI

e-mail: azedin6@hotmail.com

"After Advertising ,violence,

Now, more than ever,The image is contemporary world, and owing to the

pornography and television have one of the main pillars of a new pagan cultural interaction and the magnitude
of symbolic violence against many opened the way for compliance religion playing on the theme of fun and pleasure, Such aspiration was forms of local cultures,The subject of made with the help of advanced the image has become as a carrier of Paul Verilo technologies as an important system in new values and patterns of unusual forms of inhaling pictures .This in fact human society. defies us with more than a question. It must be admitted, that the

with the lowliness of mass media "

formation of a critical discourse around the image, as a mechanism of mass media and communication is

It is also assort of idolatry which is becoming a major
aspect of With the advance of globalization and erasing the borders between the countries,technology today brings new cultural perceptions and human aspects so as to ponder on the predominance of the owners of wide financial and political circles, whether embraced by state agencies or entities justify ing their existence by the philosophy of privatization and global trade. modernity associated with the society

very difficult .It requires the capacity of consumption as long as the image of knowledge and accuracy of maintain a strong influence on the observation, as well as the ability to feelings and emotions and the link multiple domains that contribute imagination of peolpe of the ways they to enrich the research . Hence we do receive signs, icons and the degree of not pretend to take the full control of these fantasies on their daily ramifications of daily manifestations life. and in public life into a comprehensive Because of the extreme importance view. which medialogy occupies in the


The collective imaginary and the image


The Documentary film as an angle of view
We may think that documentary films have been dealing

with the practice of filming in an honest and sincere way the It goes without saying that the presence of the image, and I events and people with a kind of credibility and objectivity, mean the visual image and television in particular, has become something tangible, and not subject to question or but is not putting a camera amid a supermarket or a public street and taking pictures of people shopping or going to the bidding. movies is not as real as filming reality in its details? Here we note that realism does not give us a documentary The image has become to a large extent, as a source of references for behavioral and cultural conduct , including film. What we need is a technical point of view a message ways of making signs and gestures . It is respect we are and an ambitious moral and ideological aspiration to change supposed to be in a sensitive part and in the most complex the behaviour or call for different aspects of behaviour. arena of unconscious processes underlying some of the most common concepts and events in human beings. The director of a documentary film needs to go through While legislation rules and the basic values were derived from the patterns and contexts of educational and socio cultural powers such as the State, and the family, school, or other systems and beliefs , The picture with all its arsenal of technological and paramilitary forces is trying continuously to replace these packs of values , and to compete in order to win the popular masses. And as long as the image has the media and means of physical presence and symbolic enchantment in each house, and in the mind of every individual, Then it has given itself the right to make up everyone’s mind according to certain attributes. Entertainment altogether and alienation in many cases highlights the presence which is forced through the mutual consent voluntary or involuntary though not written as a contract between the viewer and the sender. certain stages such as choosing a specific vision, and the selection of moments of art, and packaging to display views as well as to think about what the alternatives are to some of our problems. Emerged from the value of the documentary film of the need to record the lifestyles of rights and access to models of video footage,The documentary film may work with some institutes or institutions that have been willing to portray the facts and events and testimonies of daily life for the benefit of independent official . It could be argued that this type of films aimed at either expanding some ideas within the media or to influence customers . The documentary, like all films, need to create the conditions in writing, directing, and financing. As soon as

We shed some light on the viewer within the field of image thoughts turn to a possible scenario ,then the adoption of a its implications along the processes of communication.. This position towards the world by the use of fact ,reality so as tp is not only the importance of old speech and oral traditions present a face of the truth but not all the truth. lost their influence but how dangerous is the magic of visual Once the director advances in the selection of characters impact on the remaking of imagination. and not the characters and adopts the way of narrative We usually face images without employing our style , and adjusting what has been initiated in the extension understanding of the picture, but there is an absence of a certain vision, then work with the background and the awareness of consumers regarding the consumption of selection is based on the construction of meaning and form materials displayed on the far-reaching generations. of the content of what,where,how ,who,and why we want to share. The film is not a transfer of the reality it is rather a choice, I mean within the structure of events one person adopts as choice, aesthetically and technically to work the vision of a particular ideology .

Mr. El Ouafi is a teacher of English language and literature at high school since 1984. He is a founding member of the Don Quichote cinema club Audivisual which pilots, since its foundation in 2010, a reflection on the meaning of cinema and audiovisual. Mr. El Ouafi participated in several national and international conferences on the themes of cinema. He published three books.



a Petkov ntoniya scalu A ript by dreea Da Transc r: An
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Actress Lilia Cuntapay and Director Antoinette Jadaone at Udine FEFF 14
One of the most popular stars in Filipino horror cinema, never awarded and rarely even credited, the ‘ghost-lady’ Lilia Cuntapay finally receives her tribute in Antoinette Jadaone‘s ‘Six Degrees of Separation from Lilia Cuntapay’, telling the tragicomic tale of her life as an overlooked ‘extra’, never walking the red carpet, never appearing on a film poster. CUEAFS‘s Antoniya Petkova had a quick talk with both Lilia and director Antoinette during the last day of the Udine Far East Film Festival 2012 about the inspiration for the production, its realisation and Lilia‘s experience of being the lead actress. Antoniya Petkova: This is your debut feature film. You’ve worked on three shorts before – ‘Tag Along’, ‘It Feels So Good to Be Alive’ and ‘The Most Beautiful Film’, so how was the experience of producing a feature film? Antoinette Jadaone: It was a big adjustment for me, because my short films are really really short. They are like 3-5 minutes long. So the shift from 5 minutes to 90 minutes was a big adjustment. Also, when I was AJ: Actually the concept for the film started way before that. I was always conceptualising and gathering research. It was originally a concept for a short film. It was about movie stars wanting to be in the movie posters, but of course in the poster you can only put very few names, so it was supposed to be a comedy. And one of my characters there was supposed to be a film extra, who wants her name finally in that poster, after working in the film industry for so long. And that was Lilia. But I figured if I do a short film, it would be very expensive, since I would have to employ big name actors and their fees would be very high. So I thought I would just focus on one story, one character from the film and I chose Lilia, as a concept for the full-length film. AP: You started working on the film in 2010, so it had a relatively short production span. How did the idea come about, where did the inspiration for this film come from? doing short films, I had non-actors and then suddenly I have an actor. But in the end, it was worth all the time, effort and tears. So it was good that this was my first full-length film.


AP: So when you developed the project, was it already with Lilia in mind? AJ: Yes. If she hadn’t accepted the role, I wouldn’t have had a film. I had no other actors in mind, it is truly about her. AP: The film is mostly about people who are not central as the lead actors and how they get overlooked. There is a reference to Kevin Bacon in the film as an example. Is that from a personal experience of being overlooked or is it more of a general opinion? AJ: After graduating from college, I worked in film and television productions. I’ve been working there for 5-6 years. I was a production assistant and I was in charge of handling film extras. I was aware of how the directors and other people would treat the non-actors. I was very interested in this, because most of them had dreams of being big in the future. There were some for whom this was just a job, but I wanted to focus on those who wanted to make it, but they weren’t beautiful enough, not tall enough, and so on. That is how the whole concept came about. AP [to Lilia]: You have been in films since 1986, but you have been exceptionally overlooked. You haven’t really been done credit in all of them. So how does it feel to have a film just about you? Lilia Cuntapay: I’ve worked for a while in the film industry and now I have my own documentary, ‘Six Degrees from Lilia Cuntapay’ by Antoinette and Rodrigo, both of whom worked very hard, and I am very very happy. And now I am in Italy, where everyone seems so nice and I would like to thank everyone very much. AP: The film has a scene of the fictional reception of a Best Supporting Actress award and you actually received an actual Best

Actress Award from the Cinema One Originals Digital Film Festival. How does it feel to live through the events of the film in reality?

is a ridicule of the film industry. What are you hoping people would get from watching this film? AJ: You’re right, it’s a critique of the star

LC: I was really happy for that and I am sharing it with everyone – from my coworkers, my directors, my producers, and to all of the people in the world. I am very thankful. AP: Did you enjoy having a whole film about you and working with Antoinette? LC: I feel happy having worked with everyone, especially my director and my producer. But I am actually alone in the film, because it is all about my life. AP: The film combines fact and fiction and it’s like a breakthrough style – this kind of focus on one person, but still mixing fact and fiction. Did you get an i n s p i r a t i o n f o r t h e s t y l e f ro m somewhere? How did you come up with the idea of this combination? AJ: My original screenplay was actually not a mockumentary, it wasn’t really a fictional reality. It was a very straight narrative. I submitted it to another film grad in the Philippines, but it did not get in. So I made some more research – I interviewed her; I would visit her in her house, we would eat out just to see how people react to her. I interviewed directors she’s worked with, actors she’s worked with, so with more research, I figured the more appropriate approach should be via a mockumentary. But I still couldn’t let go of my original concept, having her imagining her award speech, because I really loved that part, so I just took the risk of combining the reality and the magic realism and I am really lucky it worked, otherwise it would’ve been a real disaster. AP: I find it interesting that the film is a tribute of Lilia, but at the same time

system in our country, because before the film, they would recognise her by face, but not by name. If you talked to someone about her, you’d have to describe her – but if you say the old woman with the long white hair, they would remember.  And most film extras are like that. She is the representative of the film extras, that are unknown people who work in the industry; and also the people who work behind the camera, who don’t get recognised, like the production assistants, their assistants and so on. I think if you see the film, most people would find the message being to ‘feel good’, because the film is about the unsung hero of the film industry. But if you look deeper, maybe after a second viewing, you would see that it is a bitter story. Because in the film, she is given an award, but in reality there is not much that would happen to film extras in the Philippines, because that’s the star system. Unless more and more people really beyond the good looks and see more the talent, I think nothing would really happen. So it’s really a bitter story. For instance, after this film I don’t think Lilia would be able to get the role of a lawyer, or be in a love story, she is still going to be cast in stereotypical roles and that is a curse that she has to live with: because of her looks, because of her history – she is put in a box. So it’s a bitter story. AP [to Lilia]: So are you hoping to make some new films, where you don’t play the role of a ghost? LC: Any character that my producer and my director would give me, I am willing to do it.

This contributions was produced as official coverage of the Udine FEFF 14 as part of the Coventry University East Asian Film Society (CUEAFS) [25]


Turkish Drama on Arab Television: Reasons for the Continuing Success

The two Turkish series that heralded the success of Turkish drama on Arab television are Ihlamurlar Altinda (Under the Linden Trees) [Kanal D, 2005] and Gumus (Silver) [Kanal D, 2005], being translated to Arabic as Sanawat Aldayaa (The Lost Years) and Nour, which were shown on MBC (Middle East Broadcasting Center) in 2008 and 2009. Turkish TV drama has led to

charismatic characters, clothing fashion, setting, storylines, and topics. Unlike almost all Egyptian TV series, the main characters in Turkish series are quite young and are physically v e r y a t t r a c t i v e . Fo r instance, it is believed that the huge success of Gumus is partly due to the sexual appeal of the young


strong public commotion in the Arab world. These two series, in particular, have attracted an estimated 85 million viewers across the Arab world (Buccianti 2010:1). This remarkable success has raised questions about the rationales that attracted millions of viewers across the Arab world to the Turkish drama. Several reasons can account for the enduring glamour of Turkish drama on Arab television. First, Turkish TV series have provided Arab audiences with visual elements that are difficult to find in national TV productions whether the Egyptian, Syrian or Saudi. These different features incor porate the series’ young and

former model male protagonist, famous by the name of Mohanad. The Arab audiences’ intense infatuation with the physical attractiveness of the young main Turkish characters is mainly the result of the general absence of young lead characters in Arab drama. For example, lead characters in almost all Egyptian soap operas are generally quite old and do not exemplify the classical screen standards of “beauty,” such as Salah Saadani, Yahya Elfakharini, Nour Sheriff, Yosra, Ilham Shaheen, and Fifi Abdu.

Ouidyane Elouardaoui is a Fulbright PhD candidate in the Film and Media Studies Department at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

International Cinematic E-Magazine: Issue N° 2- July 2012 [26]

In the same vein, the main characters in Aşk-i Memnu, Ask ve Ceza and Fatmagul’un Sucu Ne? are young, very attractive and extremely fashionable. In fact, in Aşk-i Memnu, Samar’s outfits, make-up and hairstyles played a significant role not only in furbishing the modern image of the series but also in attracting fashion-lovers across the Arab world. Aşk-i Memnu’s both main and secondary characters belong to the upper class due to the nature of the series’ story, thus, all the female characters, particularly Samar, have offered the Arab viewers a spectacular show of fashionable outfits that are seen as charmingly modern for female Arab viewers, though they might be still considered conservative if compared to western clothing style. As noticed by Spence in her study of the different types of pleasure derived by soap opera viewers, the way a large number of Arab viewers have interacted with the Turkish soap characters is not merely a question of characters being likeable but rather because they are exceptional in the sense that they are the focus of attention, are leading an extravagantly different lifestyle and are surrounded by consequential events (Spence 2005: 114). More significantly, Turkish series have also engagingly dealt with topics that Arab drama writers and producers have either evaded or briefly touched on. Aşk-i Memnu’s acclaimed status, after it has gained both local and global popularity and has been translated to more than twelve languages, is primarily due to the existence of a religiously and socially forbidden love (as the title itself suggests) between a married woman and her husband’s nephew. As explained earlier, in an ArabMuslim context where family relations and traditional moral values (respect for the elderly, individual sacrifice for the common good etc…) are highly cherished, depicting such a love story in a dramatic work is still seen as risky. In this respect, the magazine Foreign Policy has stated that “Turkish drama series have succeeded in dealing with many subjects that Arab television is afraid of dealing with, such as gender equality, dealing with treason and love affairs, and discussing the subject of illegitimate children born outside of marriage” (Bassy-Charters, 2010). As to Ask ve Ceza, its most appealing aesthetic feature is the storyline which is divided into romance and action, breaking the convention of the


telenovela romance/drama plotlines. Ask ve Ceza’s romance is made attention-grabbing because it is developed between a moder n advertising agent young woman (Yasmin) and an educated young man with traditional upbringing (Savas). Most notably, the action plotline, which revolves around old rivalries between Savas’ family tribe and an oth er tribe from th e s am e background, where unexpected substories about murder, drug-dealing, and disloyalty frequently occur, adds to the series’ tense intrigue and maintains the viewers’ curiosity s throughout the one-hundred and twenty-four episodes of the Arabic version.To sum up, the aesthetic values of Turkish soaps have enormously engaged Arab viewers who found pleasure in comparing between their relatively conservative cultural context and the far liberal one of fictional Turkish characters, who take on a different life style, conspicuous in their clothing and behavior codes, despite them being similar in terms of religious beliefs.

International Cinematic E-Magazine: Issue N° 2- July 2012 [27]


K A R A i n F o c u s
During the conflict country burned like anything. Every day there was chaos and fear on the face of people. News was quite terrifying. Once I was watching television news, I was very inspired to write a story. it was as if a fairy tale, a young person was imitating the voice of different birds at woods and birds were also replying him .At that very moment I got the character and I wrote the story of a kid who can chat with birds and kept the premise of the story the conflict of the country. After completing the story I went to school asked the principal to provide me the time to narrate the story to the kids .Eventually got the time and narrated the story to the kids .they liked it very much. Then after I started to look for the finance, which was painful, nobody appreciated the idea to make a film. Finally my friends came together and supported me to establish cinema door pvt ltd and the movie KARA happened. However, the story is based in Nepal but the problem of conflict is worldwide, so that I hope people around the world will relate to it. Those people who lost their life are just news for others but life becomes horrible to the belonging family. I have tried to represent a home where father is missing during the conflict. The premise of the KARA is a decade long civil war in the country. During that period, many innocent citizens lost their life. The story of kara revolves around the two kids, KAJU and JUN whose father disappeared during the conflict. There is no indication of his whereabouts. The search is going on to find, whether he is dead or alive. As Kaju can chat with birds, they wander around the village to look for the whereabouts of their father with the help of birds. Wherever he finds a bird, he asks about his father as if the bird can give him any information. One fine on the way to home from school, they find a lost squab. They feel very sorry about the squab. They decide to find out the parents of it. This leads them on an innocent journey. I am a FTII (Film and Television Institute of India) graduate, I also wrote the screenplay of the film. After completing the course in India, I came to my country, start making television ad, documentary, and music video. Kara is my first experience of feature film. devendra golatkar is the cinematographer of kara, who is also a FTII graduate. Our diploma film WHO THOUGHT OF LITTLE BOY) has won Kodak award in 2008 in CLERMONT-FERRAND SHORT FILM FESTIVAL. Praveg Pandey and Snabu Neupane played the lead role as kaju and jun .the editor of the film is Nimesh Shrestha . Anmol bhave is music director. Bipin Sthapit and Nagendra Ghimire is executive producer.

Mr. Keshab Pandey




E- mail : medaiss@gmail.com

Japanese Anime & the Child’s Sub-conscious
Hayao Miyazaki’s Spirited Away and Howl's Moving Castle Under Focus
The popularity of anime comes from its intimate relationship with the child. This is apparent in the fantasy genre in connection with the subconscious. The masterpieces of Miyazaki nurture the imagination of children all over the world by telling that there are a number of things on Earth which are beyond comprehension. them that  “life is fun, to live is a pleasure.” (2) It is better to let them discover the excitement created by the discovery of wonderful things because thinking that life brings unexpected encounters makes tomorrow more interesting. According to Todorov “the fantastic is that hesitation experienced by a person who knows only the laws of nature, confronting an apparently supernatural event.”(3) Spirited Away and Howl's Moving Castle are two exemplary works of the fantastic in that the uncertainty is experienced both by the character and the audience. For the protagonists, Chihiro and Sophie, the uncertainty comes at the beginning of the film in: the restaurant area of a strange town for Chihiro and in the streets of the hometown for Sophie respectively. The audience feel the protagonists’ fear and hesitation and, consequently, empathize with them. D.G. Hartwell also writes that “fantasy promises escape from reality. [30] It is characteristic of fantasy stories that they take the readers out of the real world of hard facts, hard objects and hard decisions into a world of wonders and enchantments.” (4) For Susan Napier, “fantasy is any conscious departure from consensus reality.” (5). As mentioned above, Miyazaki chose the fantasy genre to give assurance to children. Furthermore, he believes that creating fantasy is akin to opening up the world of the subconscious where psychological reality reigns. In that sense, fantasy is more real than the reality of this world. He also believes that “it is poor idea to push all the traditional things into a small folk-culture world. Surrounded by high technology and its filmsy devices, children are more and more losing their roots. We must inform them of the richness of our traditions” (6).

The Child, the Subconscious and the Fantastic

In his films, Miyazaki used dreams a s a m e a n s t o p e n e t r at e t h e subconscious of the child: “when a child makes a good meeting in his imagination, one should never say that it does not exist; although it is certain that no teacher, no parent can be so wonderful, he must tell him that is, but he has not yet met” (1) Miyazaki says. Children also learn the essential pleasure of living via the other world of Miyazaki and its strange creatures. It is useless to tell

From Disney to Manga
In stereotyped faces-screens, only the eyes and mouth express feelings, huge eyes (imported from the world of Walt Disney) can express a range of complex feelings such as sadness, astonishment, and determination. Manga and anime are also found in the background of unrealistic elements that reflect the mood of the characters. Thus, we can say that manga and anime are the ideal form of media that can affect directly the subconscious without mental defenses.

Adults vs Miyazaki
Miyazaki says : “Adults should not restrict the imagination and creativity of children.” (7) The strangeness of the characters or the processing of the characters, in Miyazaki’s movies make it clear not only to children but also to adults that life offer opportunities. Since these films have both mythological and universal dimensions, they are worldwide appreciated. These masterpieces contribute to the values neglected today (love, friendship, justice and all things which give meaning to our lives). “In our time, it is no longer possible to understand these values from a platform in classroom. Parents can no longer pass them on to their children by preaching.” (8) Miyazaki says. In conclusion, Miyazaki's stories entertain and give hope. The phenomenon of Spirted Away (or Kamikakushi) and Howl's Moving Castle give the unstable youth a period of rest from this world. References: 1,2,6,7 and 8 in Courrier INTERNATIONAL « Hors Série : Pop Japan», mars-avril-mai 2010. 3,4,5 in Film Criticism 29, no. 3 (2005), 4-27.

Animation Film
Japanese feature-length animated films can be categorized generally as either a standalone original work or a theatricalrelease edition of a television animation series. Pioneering examples of the latter include the movies of Tezuka Osamu (Astro Boy, etc.) and Matsumoto Reiji’s Space Cruiser Yamato (1977) released outside Japan as Star Blazers and Galaxy Express 999 (1979). Po p u l a r l o n g - r u n n i n g t e l e v i s i o n animation series such as Crayon Shinchan, Doraemon, and the phenomenally successful Pokemon (“Pocket Monsters”) release featurelength productions on a regular basis. For more than two decades the market for standalone animated films has been dominated by director Miyazaki Hayao, combining humor, social criticism, Mohammed AISSAOUI, the finantial director of International Cinematic E-Magazine. environmental activism, and poetic lyricism. Miyazaki has realised a string of artistic and box-office successes that include Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (1984), My Neighbor TOTORO (1988), The Princess Mononoke(1997), Spirited Away (2001); winner of the 2003 Academy Award for best animated feature film, and Howl’s Moving Castle (2004). Another important animated film director is Oshii Mamoru, whose two Ghost in the Shell movies (1995 and 2004) are ground-breaking science fiction works that question what it means to be human. Both Oshii and Miyazaki released major new animated films in 2008. Oshii's The Sky Crawlers is an action and adventure story of young fighter pilots, and Miyazaki's Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea is the tale of a young mermaid who wants to become a human.


JULY 2012



E - M A G A Z I N E

A Separation Movie: A Milestone in Persian Cinema


Nowadays, it is worthwhile noting allowed- “Asian Cinema” or “Third a very accomplished Hitchcockian that a large body of Western film critics Cinema”. Within the same line of drama film written and directed by and film historians do focus on the thought, Gonul Dönmez-Colin refers to Asghar Farhadi. Thus, this thrilling recent flow of Iranian cinema as one of Iranian cinema experience as “the most domestic drama needs to be read t h e m o s t l a u d a b l e a n d h i g h l y vibrant and challenging cinema of the against the backcloth of the New c o m m e n d a b l e A s i a n C i n e m a Middle East.”1 Experience. In this respect, the Persian Film Industry largely proves to be Today, in geopolitical terms, Iran is Iranian Cinema and the platform of a second decade third-millennium post-

revolutionary Iranian society. A at odds with, or skeptical and suspicious Se paration offers an exhaustively artistically speaking- as one of the most of anything coming from or anything disclosing picture and a highly important national cinemas. Within this Iranian well-received in the West, most compelling look at the daily snags, framework, many well-renowned notably the United States’ global complexities and tragedies of this Iranian film-makers such as Abbas political and cultural paradigm. Truly, particular contemporary Western Asian Kiarostami, Mohsen Makhmalbaf and this geopolitical impasse/enmity society. As a matter of fact, Farhadi’s Jafar Panahi had a great role on the extends to other geographies such as the approach adopted in the aboveformation of modern Iranian cinema. cultural one. For this particular reason, mentioned film forthrightly shows that The latter is one of the leading it actually needs to be made clear that the film-maker under study is working contemporary Asian cinemas putting the New Iranian Cinema has recently toward putting an insightful artistic forward an alternative cinematic started to gain momentum finding for message completely devoid of any paradigm. Given the rise of Asian itself a niche on the map of cinema on outright and barren political skirmish nations on the world stage, Asian a global scale. This new Third-world with the Mullah authorities. So, the culture has begun to receive an Cinema has been recognized and question is: does Asghar Farhadi international acclaim and global interest praised as the new wave, reaping awards provide the audience with a licence to paving the way for establishing a theory at one international film festival after lay its eyes on what goes behind the or concept of -if the expression may be another as is the case with “A Separation”, curtain? [32]

As far as A Separation is concerned, it is much more widespread among middle- address the human motivations and about a story of an upper-middle-class class families despite their religious behaviours in a very insightful and couple who ultimately decide to stop background. Feeling deeply frustrated compelling way. Farhadi’s critique/take living together as spouses. From the very and disheartened, Simin decides to on life contradictions in Iran turns out beginning of the movie, the audience is leave away from home to reside with her to be quite covert, implicit and tacit in provided with a highly significant and parents. Nader, who has a translucently the sense that he is trying to vehicle a suggestive scene that depicts Simin adamant character, hopes his wife to metaphor for today’s Iran that is caught (Leila Hatami) and her husband Nader reconsider her decision and come back in the vortex of political, social and (Peyman Moadi) looking directly at the as their teenage daughter is in need of ethical dilemma/impasse; that is why, camera and discussing with the unseen parental tenderness and warmth. Farhadi’s chef-d’oeuvre seems to be a vivid judge the issue of their divorce. Simin is Farhadi’s tale is remarkably rich and full conundrum at a larger extent. Without trying to get divorced because she wants of unpredictable and sur prising exception, the movie characters do not to move abroad looking for new developments as the storyline keeps appear to be at ease/peace, especially opportunities for herself and her bombarding the audience with sparks when it comes to grappling with the daughter Termeh (Sarina Farhadi, epitomizing topsy-turvy slices of life in paltry frustrations of modern city life or director's real daughter) as life gets modern Iran. At this very stage, the looking for new horizons outside the complicated and perplexing in her movie director astutely twists the plot borders of their dear nation. As a homeland Iran, but Nader refuses to w h e n N a d e r h i r e s a n e a r n e s t consequence, they do g ain our emigrate with them, because he has to underprivileged woman, named Razieh sympathy and heart throughout the take constant care of his fragile, feeble (Sareh Bayat), to take care of his movie since they do have their own and senile father suffering from enfeebled father, but the latter has not reasons and they are also completely Alzheimer’s disease which is a religious asked her husband, Hodjat (Shahab exhausted by the bureaucratic banalities a n d m o r a l d u t y o n h i s p a r t . Hosseini) to do so. A Separation’s Gordian and obstacles. As a matter of fact, these Interestingly enough, we do not see the knot mainly lies in the act of hiring characters are not capable of keeping magistrate in this sequence because we, Razieh since the latter keeps unfolding their moral compass or their decorum the viewers, are simply placed in his as a source of non-stop cycle of throughout the movie as is the case with position. So, behind placing the camera misunderstandings and brawls alongside Nader and Hodjat, but they are not in this position, the film director would with her quick-tempered husband who portrayed as being outright or clear-cut like us to be in the judging position and shows an excessive religious piety and villains because they always mind their adopt a neutral view vis-à-vis the couple devotion. Ultimately, the situation gets manners and self-control. Here, it is in particular and the society as a whole. worse and worse as Nader is accused of very important to note that the acting is I n o t h e r w o r d s, t h e v i e w e r i s being behind Razieh’s miscarriage (an so excellent especially the 11-year-old metaphorically involved into the off-screen scene in terms of cinematic Termeh who demonstrates a great deal proceedings of this very critical case. language). This very scene underlines the fact that the couple’s life would endlessly and As to the specificity of the movie, it is of calmness and composure despite the fact that the family institution is falling

apart before her eyes, though we feel certainly a very honest attempt on the that there is a repressed hope behind hopelessly be an incessant cycle of part of the writer-director Farhadi to her contemplative sight and silence. On hardships and tribulations. It is a offer us a portrait/sketch of an Iranian top of that, she is a fairly shy and quiet genuine incarnate metaphor for today’s society that is deeply divided by sex, character who is pretty much central Iran where modern ideas (i.e., women generation, religion and class. It is an and peripheral to the storyline of the asking for divorce in a society e m o t i o n a l l y n a r r a t i v e - d r i v e n drama taking place around her. dominated by male prerogative) are masterpiece that primarily tries to


It is much more important to note truly reflect the depth of the emotional that the film under scrutiny is an implicit artistic condemnation of a country that is invaded by a tsunami of impact of separation as supremely manifested upon Termeh’s sincere facial lineaments. The drama’s open ending

separations and schisms. The upshot of engages the audience in an endless this line of argument reveals that interpretation of the schisms that is Asghar Farhadi takes us inside the Iran tearing off the Iranian societal tissue. In we almost never see where his camera addition to that, it definitely gives an astutely captures shabby frustrations of opportunity for the young generation in a modern society far away from being the name of Termeh to find a way for the mouthpiece of a conspiracy agenda. Iran’s current impasse and get away The camera angles adopted in this film beautifully reflect Mr. Farhadi’s crestfallen and brooding cinematic vision. In this setting, the intensity and complexity of the drama flow technically and aesthetically does require a restless camera as a way to capture the whimsical shifting of the characters’ moral viewpoint. Lots of scenes help the audience pin down the class conflict arising from the gulf between privilege (Nader/Simin) and deprivation (Hodjat/Razieh) and changing ideas of men and women in an Islamic Republic. The choice of spaces is largely far more relevant since most of the movie sequences take place in small closed flats and a fully crowded court-room which turn out to be emblematic scenes of closed horizons and aborted aspirations. The soundtrack also bestows upon this slowmotion nightmare a deep poetic touch because pieces of piano music played from the obsolete patriarchal paradigm in the name of Nader’s senile father. A Separation is not a mere TV drama or a superficial sociological tract, but it is a heartbreaking movie à la Ingmar Bergman in terms of unanswered emotional, philosophical and ethical questions as a middle-class modern family faces the threat of being split despite the fact that such plights/ troubles are quite universal, but Farhadi’s film is a clever, insightful and passionate examination of human vulnerability and malaise. Given this focus, it is worthwhile considering that this movie puts emphasis on the ontological vortex in which most of the film characters are caught in. Ultimately, Mr. Farhadi has succeeded in translating the story of one couple’s breaking down marriage into a symbol of devastating separations that are splitting an entire country/society at large.

Gönül Dönmez-Collin, Cinemas of the Other: a Personal Journey with Film Makers from the Middle East and Central Asia (Bristol, Great Britain: Intellect Books, Cromwell Press 2006), p.10.




July 2012

Hicham MOUSSA e-mail: hicmoussa@gmail.com

Dong-hyuk’s Silenced:
Hwang Dong-Hyuk’s Silenced is based o n K o n g J i - Yo u n g ’ s n o v e l ‘Dokani’ (2009), which was inspired by a true story. Silenced is telling us about a young appointed teacher from Seoul, Kang In-ho, taking his first job in a school for hearing-impaired children in Mujin city. Kang needs the job to afford his daughter‘s surgery. In fact, he was obliged to take his first job faraway from his family. Kang accidently met Yoo-Jin on his way to school in a repairing car garage. Yoo-Jin drived him to his appointed school, because his car broke down on the way. Kang remarked, upon his arrival to the school, traces of sadness in the kids’ faces. This strangeness eventually pushed him to investigate the matter and read their school profiles; social and physical difficulties are part of the kids’ lives. He asked another teacher in his school, Yeon Doen, about it who said: ‘Boys always make strange sounds when they are bored’. But Kang was not satisfied with his colleague’s answer; he always felt something strange was going on in that school.

Voiceless Resistance in The Age of New Media
about his daughter ? Or should he turn a blind eye to the crimes and care only about his own ? This example embodies the conflict between the personal and collective family of an individual; being part of the same family and society. In the beginning, Kang’s mother rejected the fact that her son pays much attention to other kids and neglects his daughter, but she later changed her mind as soon as she realised how serious the kids’ sufferings had been. Kang and Yoo-Jin tried all the possibilities to stop the head-master and director from committing more of the crimes, but they could not find anybody to listen to their complaints. Therefore, they both turned to the tools offered by the new media and filmed the kids’ witness. The kids’ witness was sent to journalists and media channels. In few days, YTN TV channel showed interest in covering the kids’ stories. This interview was broadcasted and stimulated a wide reaction from the society. Clearly, the role of the new media and citizen journalism is very crucial.

Kang realised, few days after his arrival, that the kids have endured physical violence and severe sexual abuse from the school’s administrator and director; identical twins. The kids were beaten to death when they refused to obey their teacher, administrator and director’s devlish demands. The headmaster and his administrator exploited the kids’ deafness; they could not share their sufferings with others. Kang tried to become closer with the disabled children and was shocked by what he heard. He informed Yoo-Jin of the situation who was actually an employee at the Mujin Human Rights Center. They spoke to the kids and decided to inform both the police and Human Rights Center about the head-master`s and assistant’s actions. Unfortunately, they found out that the police were paid to cover the headmaster’s crimes and thus did not take their complaints seriously. Now, Kang is lost between two choices; whether he gives priority to the disbaled children or his sick daugther. In other words, should he help the kids and forget [35]


Citizen journalism is usually defined as journalism done by non-journalists. Or «When the people formerly know the audience and employ the press tools in their position to inform one’s another». 1 For instance, Kang and Yoo-Jin knew their audience and made the kids’ story known, due basically to human rights activits’ willingness and also the language of the new media. The film director may want to tell us that there is no excuse for not resisting injustice in the age of the new media. In other words, resistance becames easier and more effective. The police inspector in Mujin used to cover the school’s administrators crimes. Now it is not anymore possible, due particularly to the embarrasing situation the new media has put the police inspector and his compatriots in. The police agent could not hide the head-master’s crimes after the broadcasting of this interview. He caught the headmaster and asked him to keep silent. Clearly, «Every politician should not only be concious of bloggers, but should be afraid of bloggers». Citizen journalism compliments formal journalism and gives plenty of possibilities to human rights activists. It is not anymore allowed for minorities to keep silent on the crimes of others. For instance, the film tells us about these disabled children who were able to make their story known to the world. The kids sued the head master and his brother. The kids’ lawyer provided all the cut proofs to put them in jail. Unfortunately, the judge had another opinion and surprised everybody, including the film viewers, in releasing them out. The headmaster's wife and secretary, Park Hye-Jin, addressed the kids’ parents to buy their forgiveness, which she easily got, due to the parents’ poverty. For this reason, Min Su could not stop crying, because they did not apologize to him, but to his grandparents « They did not apologize neither to me nor to my brother». This implicates the mentality of the new generation; independence from the family. Min Su could not forgive nor forget, because his brother died in a train accident near to Mr. Pak’s house after he abused him sexually. «Under great pain and can’t really walk» said Min Su. He took revenge from Mr. Pak and also died in a tragic train accident. The kids demonstrated against this injustice. They sought even to voice and make their concerns known to the society. The police accused the disabled community of taking over the public space. They were sending vocal warnings which were not heard and then they attacked. What is more, people were watching the disabled community fighting this injustice alone and they did not support them. This scene signifies that society left the disabled community to face their corrupt system. Thus, it is difficult to envision any possible changes when minorities are not supposrted. This is one of the themes of the film. It shows that demonstrations did not work and Mr. Kang tried to change the whole system, but he could not do it alone. Change pre-requisites the cooperation of all parts of the same society. Silenced explores the role of the new media. It is a strong arm in the hand of minorities and activists. For instance, the kids’ story was not known even in their city, where the new media made it known nationally and later cinema took it internationally. In fact, such crimes are taking place in different places in the world and now thanks to the new media, we know about them. Concisely, the new media provides activists with huge opportunities to unite and exchange information and work towards a better future.










International Cinematic E-Magazine Staff: