With clarity and a deep respect for his subjects, filmmaker Petr Lom follows five stories of ordinary Egyptians who have suffered injustice at the hands of the State in the first year of the revolution’s aftermath. Shot in an intimate vérité style, the film takes us into hidden corners of Egyptian lives, far from the media headlines, showing us that the Arab Spring has fallen far short of its promise: human rights abuse remains endemic. However, despite military abuse of power, violence and censorship, the Egyptian people are not willing to suffer in silence.
Our narrative arc starts with the euphoria and pride of freedom at the beginning of the Revolution, and then charts how these hopes are confronted with the continued ugliness of much of reality under the military regime. It continues by repeatedly confronting and challenging injustice with courage, and ends with an open question mark as to how political reality will develop in Egypt. Along the way, particularly through our first three stories – of Wally, Mohamed and Lamiz – we show the audience how the institutionalization of injustice and fear continues to operate in Egypt, fundamentally unchanged.
All the stories in our film are ones of courage: courage to challenge injustice and no longer remain silent. Wally is not afraid to speak out about the injustice he has suffered. Mohamed is similarly willing to talk about the ongoing injustice of the police in Egypt. Mark Nabil is trying to get his brother released from prison. Lamiz is filing a lawsuit against the police. And Salwa is suing the army for the virginity test they forced upon her. Whether our characters are successful in obtaining justice is not in the end what is essential: far more important is simply to document their courage.
Petr Lom, Director
Recommended rating: Cert 12.