Artists celebrate rule of King Abdullah

Updated 13 May 2014

Artists celebrate rule of King Abdullah

Seventeen Saudi artists have created a mix of artwork, including video documentaries and photographs, to celebrate the nine-year reign of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah.
The artwork went on display at the Park Hyatt Hotel in Jeddah on Tuesday. Prince Fahd bin Muqrin, who heads a national environmental education initiative, opened the exhibition.
The artists are Khalid Rashid, Mohammed Asiri, Mehdi Aghili, Saleh Al-Shari, Abidha Al-Faiz, Ashwaq Dali, Hind Naseer, Hana Neto, Mohammed Kahal, Salma Sheikh, Sadiq Ghalib, Wadad Ahmadi, Hisham Punjabi, Ghada Al-Rabih, Dua’a Bender, Ihab Haddad and Jasmine Khayat.
Khayat said it was a privilege to celebrate the anniversary by exhibiting her work. It was the duty of every citizen, who has enjoyed nine years of security, safety and stability, to thank King Abdullah, she said.
Prince Fahd praised the efforts of the artists and organizers and asked Allah to grant the king a long life. He said King Abdullah was like a father to the nation.
His many achievements include the expansion of the Grand Mosque, the train at the holy sites for pilgrims, the Zamzam water project and the Jeddah and Makkah metro train developments.
The king, said Prince Fahd, also created many jobs for Saudis, opened up several universities, developed the economic and industrial cities, created five medical cities and expanded many hospitals.
In addition, King Abdullah started a project to restructure the judiciary, established the national center for inter-cultural and religious dialogue and expanded the overseas scholarship program.
He also issued a decree to create the King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy, said Prince Fahd.


Film review: ‘Parkour(s)’ takes obstacle course through class conflict

The sport of parkour forms the backdrop of this Algerian film. Supplied
Updated 08 December 2019

Film review: ‘Parkour(s)’ takes obstacle course through class conflict

  • Fatma Zohra Zamoum’s “Parkour(s)” is set in a small city in Algeria
  • It screened at the recent Cairo International Film Festival

CHENNAI: The fast-paced sport of parkour — or negotiating obstacles in an urban environment by running, jumping and climbing — forms the backdrop of this Algerian film.

Fatma Zohra Zamoum’s “Parkour(s)” is set in a small city in Algeria, and it seems that the director has used the title to convey the kind of histrionics her characters indulge in. Take, for instance, Youcef (Nazim Halladja) — a sportsman playing parkour — literally cartwheeling through the urban landscape. His reckless antics also include threatening people with a gun and pleading with would-be bride Kamila (Adila Bendimered) to ditch her future husband, Khaled, (Mohamed Bounoughaz). 

The movie, which screened at the recent Cairo International Film Festival, unfolds during a day and takes us to the wedding and the assorted group of men and women gathered there. As we see these people making their way toward the occasion, we get to see that they are all motivated by different pulls and pressures.

The film unfolds during a day and takes us to a wedding and the assorted group of men and women gathered there. Supplied

Youcef is there to try to persuade Kamila from walking up the aisle. The kitchen help is set to make an extra buck. However, other characters have not been written with much conviction.

Zamoun says in a note: “The multi-character drama shows how a normal situation turns into major clashes reflecting the conflict between classes, ideas and generations in Algerian society, whose youth try to take control of their lives. But they are surrounded by those who try to handcuff them.” 

The movie is not convincing on this count. For example, how is the bride — who willingly prepares for the wedding (that was my impression, anyway) — “handcuffed?” The same can be said for other characters we encounter.

What comes across loud and clear, however, is the class difference. No clarity is lost when Khaled gives money to Youcef to buy a “decent” suit for the wedding and he is offended by Khaled’s arrogance. Youcef makes no bones about this to his friend — and perhaps he is taking his revenge when he tries to sow discord among his fellow characters. Also worthy of note is the performance by the young daughter of the kitchen help, Nedjma (Lali Mansour), who gives one of the most moving and natural sequences in “Parkour(s).”

The cinematography is nothing to rave about and Youcef’s parkour antics are rather intrusive and add little to the narrative.