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The Bride of the Nile 2015

Recommended with reservations

Distributed by Ruth Diskin Films Ltd., P.O.Box 7153, Jerusalem, 91071, ISRAEL
Produced by Nadège Hasson - Temps noir
Directed by Edouard Mills-Affif
DVD , color, 88 min.

High School - General Adult
Middle East, Women, Culture

Date Entered: 01/11/2017

Reviewed by Lara Herzellah, Research and Information Literacy Librarian, Daniel A. Reed Library, State University of New York at Fredonia

In this brief documentary, Edouard Mills-Affif, explores the tragedy that millions of young girls throughout the world face when they are forced to marry a man they do not love. Heba, a girl from a small village in the Nile Delta, is set to marry a stranger, after having recently ended a three-year engagement to a man she was in love with. Her uncle, an advocate for her, works to convince Heba and her family to call off the engagement to this stranger, which then leads to conflict within the family. Throughout the film, an interesting dichotomy can be seen between the younger and older generation’s views on love, which is demonstrated as they reflect on their own experiences. Heba risks losing her family's love and support if she chooses to go against their wishes, so ultimately, she must decide what is more important to her, love or family.

This film does an excellent job of highlighting Heba’s emotional turmoil along with the cultural aspects of life in Egypt. However, without any background knowledge of the tradition and customs practiced in the Middle East, this film can come across as confusing and sometimes shocking. This documentary is recommended with reservations due to the lack of narration and any type of introduction, which would facilitate a better understanding of the film.