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thumbnail The Perfect Candidate (2019 Saudi Arabia)

Comedy , trackback

Director:  Haifaa Al-Mansour
Nora Al Awadh, Dae Al Hilali, Mila Al Zahrani
101 mins

Haifaa al-Mansour, the first Saudi woman to direct a feature (Wadjda), goes back to basics with a story of a female doctor trying to enter politics. Maryam is a plain-speaking country doctor whose desire to help her community is no simple task. One key hurdle – the road which leads to her clinic isn’t paved, and much of her job involves dragging patients across a bog so they can receive treatment. And that’s only part of the fun. If the patient happens to be male, an absurd negotiation then has to take place as to whether Maryam should be allowed to carry out her basic duties, what with her operating in a position above her station as a woman. Can you save a person without touching them, or looking at them? A domestic fable, it takes aim at the everyday misogyny that runs to the roots of Arabian society.

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