Since 1970, there have only been 11 Arab films nominated for an Academy Award under the Best International Feature Film (formerly Best Foreign Language Film) title. Arab cinema has made major strides within the international film industry, and is producing a plethora of fabulous films that shine a light on the region’s cinematic talents.
This year at the Oscars, Talal Derki’s Of Fathers And Sons and Nadine Labaki’s Capernaum, were the only two Arab submissions nominated for an Oscar, but next year, there are 4. Set to take place in February 2020, the 92nd edition of the Academy Awards will host 4 Middle Eastern films that are in the running for a nomination for the Best International Feature Film title.
Dear Son by Mohamed Ben Attia – Tunisia
Tunisian director, Mohamed Ben Attia first debuted with his critically acclaimed, award winning film, Hedi and now he’s back with his latest feature film, Dear Son. The movie tells the tale of Sami and his family, who are concerned for their son’s health, which leads to a rather unlucky incident.
Adam by Maryam Touzani – Morocco
Maryan Touzani’s film Adam is a standout submission not only for the fact that it’s a noteworthy film, but also because it is Touzani’s debut film. Exploring taboos and intense characters, the narrative is focused on the journeys of two women, an unmarried hairdresser and widowed mother in Casablanca.
It Must Be Heaven by Elia Suleiman – Palestine
It Must Be Heaven made major waves within the film industry at Cannes Film Festival this year as it won the Jury Special Mention Award. The film by Elia Suleiman, is about a Palestinian man, played by Elia himself, who travels around the world, but happens to face the same challenges as he would in his own home town.
Poisonous Roses by Ahmad Fawzi Saleh – Egypt
Based on a novel, Poisonous Roses, first debuted at the International Film Festival Rotterdam this year. Featuring actors Mahmoud Hemida and Merihan Magdi, the story is of Saqr, whose profound love for his sister are an obstacle for him and stop him from fulfilling his dreams to live a life beyond the impoverished tanneries of Cairo.