Forbidden Lies 2009 NR CC

Amazon Instant Video

(15) IMDb 7.9/10

A dramatized documentary investigating accusations that "Forbidden Love" author Norma Khouri made up her biographical tale of a Muslim friend who was killed for dating a Christian.

Starring:
Norma Khouri, Malcolm Knox
Runtime:
1 hour, 44 minutes

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Customer Reviews

I feel sorry for the father, Majid, who was another of his daughter's victims.
Christina D.
When confronted with the fact she abandoned her two children, she claims she knows they can make it without her, but the women in Jordon cannot.
Sunday
I will not go into many details and keep this write up short but I will say that you MUST see this film because it will surprise you many ways.
texan_176@yahoo.com

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
In 2003, Norma Khouri published "Forbidden Love" ("Honor Lost" in the United States), a memoir of her childhood in Jordan and the brutal murder of her best friend Dalia, a young woman killed by her own father because she was dating a Christian man. This tragic story riveted readers around the world, was translated into 16 languages, and made Khouri a celebrity in the cause of eliminating "honor killing" in the Arab world. A year later, Malcolm Knox of Australia's Sydney Morning Herald exposed Khouri's book as a hoax that got almost every detail and cultural trait of Jordan wrong and invented the victim Dalia, who had inspired so much international outrage. Knox declared Khouri's book the first great literary hoax of the 21st century, though she would have to compete with James Frey, who was exposed about the same time in the US.

Australian filmmaker Anna Broinowski, who admits to liking Norma Khouri, wanted to give the author every chance to prove that the story she wrote was true -or at least factually based. Khouri seems to have been game, though I suspect she participated in the film for the money and the free trip to Jordan. The first part of "Forbidden Lies" allows Khouri to tell Dalia's story and how she came to write about it. Then we learn about the accusations of fabrications from her critics, including Jordanian women's rights activists who asked Khouri's publishers to reclassify the book as fiction. Broinowski travels to Jordan with Khouri, film crew and "bodyguard" in tow, to uncover the truth. Rena Hasseini, a Jordanian journalist who specializes in honor crimes, first takes the filmmakers to locations around Amman to demonstrate that the story in the book could not have happened.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By trv215 on March 12, 2013
Format: Amazon Instant Video
How much do we REALLY know anyone?!
It starts out with a woman trying to make aware the injustice of her best friend's unjust murder; then things begin to disintegrate rapidly.
You gotta watch this!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Nome de Plume on October 29, 2012
Format: DVD
Perhaps the most interesting documentary I've ever seen.
Norma Khouri is truly a sociopath and the director takes us on a crazy journey.
A must see!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Sunday VINE VOICE on February 20, 2014
Format: Amazon Instant Video
This film starts off intriguing enough, but eventually one is left wondering why waste any additional time listening to a pathological liar lie? I think because we think we will eventually figure Norma Khouri out--figure out why she lies, why she wrote a fake memoir, why she even traveled to Jordon to prove her fake memoir wasn't fake. Unfortunately, you won't figure her out from this film; unless you believe she did it for fame or money; or because she was sexually abused by her father and later abused by her husband; or a combination of those things. The claims of abuse come at the very end of the documentary, at which time, one can only laugh; not because such possible abuse is funny, but because no one is going to believe anything she says by the end of the film. She might as well save it for her psychiatrist.

Norma Khouri lies all the time, one lie after another after another. When presented with all the proof of her lies in her book, she claims she had to change all the names, dates and details to protect herself and her family. When confronted with the fact she abandoned her two children, she claims she knows they can make it without her, but the women in Jordon cannot. That seems to be one of the interesting things about fake memoirs--the authors often claim they did it for a higher cause; they wrote it to help others, not to help themselves, financially or otherwise. When asked about the hundreds of thousands she stole from an elderly neighbor in Chicago, where she spent most of her life, she claims her husband and his mother got the money, and she feared they would harm her. There's always someone else who is guilty, not her. Never her.

Her husband, as portrayed in the film, is incredibly strange. The whole story is incredibly strange.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is probably one of the best documentaries of all times. There is obviously no doubt that Norma Khouri is genius con artist. You almost admire her for doing it. It is scary to know that people like her exist. The publishing world learned a huge lesson from authors trying to sell their "true stories." At one point I was laughing during the documentary because her lies turned into this cat and mouse game with the director. This documentary is worth watching!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Boliviana on August 28, 2013
Format: Amazon Instant Video
She made more harm with the book to Muslim women that help. That there is Honor killing yes, but she used 9/11 to write a book because of the sentiments of the people.
To me her worse crimes were to denied her children and abandon them, also to rob the elderly lady.
At the beginning she is not even sure if she is Catholic or Orthodox.
I visited Jordan often, never had a problem as a western female. King Hussein was famous for going out by himself .
There are organizations that help women that are afraid.
I did not read the book and thought the film was a fiction, but it turned to be a very interesting bio of a con woman,a liar.
Well made, commend the director of showing all sides.
I would not by any book written by this person.
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