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(May 27, 2003)
Customers Who Viewed This Item Also Viewed
- Optional English subtitles
- U.S. theatrical trailer
- Print interview with filmmaker Raja Amari
- Essay on the origins of belly dancing
Top Customer Reviews
What happens, when all you've lived for is slipping out of your hands. Widowed with a daughter grown, and ready to leave; Existing within a society where both men and women are a constant pressure and discouragement towards a woman's independence in life, the future may indeed look grim.
Lillia, by accident, stumbles across the nightlife in the caberets - a place where no respected woman would dare go. Why? She originally suspected her daughter of being there with one of the musicians when she did not come home that night. Instead, she found a whole new world. Shocked at first by the smokey atmosphere, bold dancers, and loud audience, she tried to stay away from it... but the friendship of the main dancer, and the allure of the night life itself beckoned to her caged spirit.
By accident she found herself actually dancing one night, encouraged by the rhythm from the darbouka and the clapping and enthusiastic response of the local audience. Her next evening there, she was once again lured out to the floor to dance, though reluctant at first. The playful, flirtatious drum beats egged her on, as did the dancers who came up to help her find the beat. With the applause and praise of the audience, something within broke free, and she lost herself to the wild excited joy of the dance.
After that evening she was theirs.Read more ›
I was expecting a story of feminine empowerment, and I got the opposite. As well, I was expecting great dance scenes, and again I got the opposite. As far as the story goes, the film's director underestimates the viewers' intelligence.
That said, it would be absolutely crazy for any belly dancer to pass this movie up. Authentic dancing in its native cultural setting is something so few of us ever get to experience. It's worth it just for that education. Although it wasn't what I hoped for, it was engaging and entertaining, and the music was great. Finally, the subtitles were well displayed and easy to read.
This is a great women's empowerment film, but you don't have to be female to enjoy it. Lilia (Hiam Abbassa) is a widowed, middle-aged woman living the life a unexciting reclusive lifestyle as a seamstress. Her only child, a daughter, is a college student who has a life of her own and has only marginal contact with her Mother.
Her life appears to be going nowhere until she happens to meet a bellydancer while shopping at a local cloth store. She is hired by her new aquaintance a few days later comes to the cabaret to deliver the repaired outfit. Immediately captivated by the rhythmic drums and the swirling dancers see finds herself returning night after night to absorb the music and atmosphere.
Eventually she musters up enough courage to try it for herself. With only a few quick pointers from the girls she borrows an outfit and takes the stage. While her technique is poor and amateurish, her energy and enthusiasm draws the attention of the male patrons and she soon becomes the most popular performer. Her success at the cabaret slowly begins to bring about positive changes in Lilia life, as she faces her problems with the same determinatiion she brings to her dancing. Eventually she becomes a self-confident, assertive woman who can once again embrace life and love.
The music is fantastic, the atmosphere exotic and Hiam Abbass is the perfect mixture of innocence and sensuality. Highly recommended!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Its not a true story, but I did read the story behind it. So, in away it did represent the Turkey women. Of course, there, this would never be allow. Read morePublished 3 months ago by connie barrick
Sexy, dreamy, thought-provoking, beautiful, inspiring for any woman in 'mid-life' who needs to still feel her feminine power.Published 13 months ago by Goldie
Hiam Abbass is the star of this movie and is delight to watch. The plot involves a three-sided triangle of mother, daughter and cabaret drummer that provides a small thread of... Read morePublished 15 months ago by Satisfied in Seattle
This is a good movie, alternating good moments and bad ones in the life of Lilia (Hiam Abbass), who manages to make a change in her life, and become a belly dancer, for her own... Read morePublished on February 7, 2014 by Mauro Primo
The dancing is fine, but I do not approve of how women are treated in Tunisia and other Islamic countries. I am glad that my daughter did not get treated in this way.Published on June 29, 2013 by Zarathustra
As a native of the Middle East (Egypt) who had to leave his beloved native land because of extreme religious fundamentalism, totalitarian government policies; as well as burgeoning... Read morePublished on June 4, 2013 by Georges
On the bright side, the music is very good, and the story is very good though perplexing. However, as Belly Dancer myself, I find the situations insulting to my profession. Read morePublished on February 20, 2013 by Tina
Sweet, and ultimately surprisingly complex. A middle aged Tunisian
widow re-discovers herself and her sexuality through belly dancing at a
nightclub. Read more
I enjoyed this movie. The slow pace of development meant I really needed to hang in to see the line of the story. It gets better. Read morePublished on November 13, 2009 by Jean E. Prescott
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