World premieres of films from Egypt, Syria, Lebanon and Algeria among other Asian must-watch movies at 8th DIFF on Sunday

Sat Dec 10,2011

Dubai, UAE; December 10, 2011: The story of a man in search of a wife to fulfil all his needs, but on his quest realizes that the people who love him suffer, is the crux of Sunday’s (December 11) Arabian Nights red carpet gala, The Whole One, an Egyptian film by director Hady El Bagoory, at the eighth Dubai International Film Festival.

Making its world premeire at DIFF, held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President & Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, The Whole One’s director El Bagoory, and the key cast of the film Hani Salama, Kinda Alloush, Zizi El Badrawy, Basma Ahmed, Rania Yucef, Amr Yucef and Yasmine Raees, will walk the red carpet on Sunday.

DIFF is presenting an interesting mix of movies from across the world including the opportunity to continue on the journey through the history of films with The Story of Film: An Odyssey, screening from 12.30 pm in short episodes at Mall of the Emirates Vox Cinema, Gold Class 2.

Another world premeire on Sunday at DIFF is Algerian director Abdenour Zahzah’s Andalucia (MoE 5 – 2 pm). The documentary charts the life of the Andalusian people who took refuge in the cities of North Africa after the fall of Granada in 1492. Since then, the music of Andalusia has passed from generation to generation.

Also making is world premiere is Syrian filmmaker Ammar Al-Beik’s Aspirin and a Bullet (MoE 5 – 9.45 pm), a conscious autobiography of a 40-year-long therapy session. It is an audio-visual recording of confession, poetry, pain and cinema. The director describes the film as his first step towards independent films made with patience, honesty and complete freedom.

The Lebanese documentary, Yamo, making its world premiere at DIFF (MoE 8 – 5 pm) is by Rami Nihawi. The protagonist lives with his mother, sister and brother in a house that resembles the country they live in, Lebanon. They communicate through silences, unspoken words, furious clashes and repeated negotiations.

The Iranian film Final Whistle (MoE 10 – 6 pm)by director Niki Karimi is about a documentary filmmaker who whilst shooting for a film encounters a girl whose mother is in prison for a crime. The girl is trying to raise ‘blood money’ for the victim, and the filmmaker finds herself in a quandary – does she intervene to help the girl or go about documenting the process?

Master filmmaker Johnnie To’s Life Without Principle, screening at 9.30 pm at First Group Theatre, is a compelling movie about a banker, a small-time thug and straight-arrow police inspector who are thrust into a complex situation when a bag of stolen money emerges forcing them to undergo some serious soul-searching. Timely and relevant, the film looks at the recent financial crisis and its impact on a money-obsessed society.

From Rwanda is Grey Matter (MoE 6 – 6.45 pm), the debut feature of Kivu Ruhorahoza, which has won awards at the 2011 Tribeca and Warsaw Film Festivals. It narrates the story of a young African filmmaker, who is on the verge of his first project about a young woman who survives unspeakable war crimes. After rehearsing with the characters in the movie, the filmmaker finds that reality blurs and the scenes from the script become real. 

Making the international premiere at DIFF is the South Korean film Beautiful Miss Jin (MoE 1- 10 pm), directed by Hee-chul Jang. The film is about a guard who mans the pedestrian crossing at a train station, and how the arrival of atypical passengers – Miss Jin with her little girl and a talkative alcoholic – changes his life.

The Education of Auma Obama (MoE 5 – 11.30 am), a documentary on the life and times of the sister of US President Barack Obama, by director Branwen Okpako, shows a brave and determined woman, who has thought very deeply about gender issues and politics. It traces Auma’s life as an academic, a dancer and someone who is making a great contribution to Kenyan life today.

From Japan is a powerful documentary by Mami Sunada – Death of a Japanese Salesman (MoE 7 – 10.15 pm), which narrates the lat months of the life of a Japanese salesman, as documented by his filmmaker daughter. The protagonist summarises his life and writes his final wishes in the form of his ‘ending note.’

The DIFF box office is open online at and at the DIFF box offices in Dubai Media City, JBR The Walk, Mall of the Emirates and Madinat Jumeirah. Additional information is also available through the Festival’s dedicated customer care number, 363 FILM (3456).

The Investment Corporation of Dubai is the title sponsor of the Dubai International Film Festival, which is held in association with Dubai Studio City. Dubai Duty Free, Dubai Pearl, Emirates Airline and Madinat Jumeirah, home to the Dubai International Film Festival, are the principal sponsors of DIFF. The Festival is supported by the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority. For more and updated information about DIFF, please visit

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