Tuesday, July 08, 2008


Rating : 6/10
Running Time : 95 Minutes
Release Date : 9th August 2007 (Lebanon) / 4th July ‘08 (India)
Director : Nadine Labaki
Starring : Nadine Labaki, Yasmine Elmasri, Joanna Moukarzel

This is a good example of a slice of life film. Nothing really big ever seems to happen but it showcases what everyday life can be. Full of little details, uneventful, yet busy, filled with small victories and cluttered with frequent disappointments.

The film revolves around a women’s beauty salon – where women go through through understandable rituals like hair cuts and other more mysterious ones like waxing, threading, colouring etc. It follows the lives of the three women who work there (Rima, Nisrine and Layale) and the people they come in contact with including one of their permanent clients, Jamale, an actress who frequently goes for auditions, a seamstress who does their aprons (Aunty Rosa), a traffic cop who has a crush on Layale.

The movie is filled with memorable moments like the Nisrine and her fiancee’s altercation with the police, Auntie Rosa and her prince Charles, Lili’s make-believe world where the neighbours are waiting for dinner, the traffic fines are letters from her lover and her plane is always ready to take-off, Layale’s secret lover who is a married man and her trials and tribulations with him, Nisrin’s mothers coy bees-and-flowers talk with her daughter prior to her wedding.

I enjoyed the pace of the film. Its never too slow to grip you yet is leisurely enough to think about life – the one shown on screen and our own. I enjoyed thinking of different incidents and comparing them to life in India – thinking at times ‘this could never happen here’ or ‘that’s just like us’. For example, the altercation with the policeman could very easily have happened in India. But the politeness with which the cop spoke throughout the incident, could never have happened here. It’s the kind of film which doesn’t bother to tie-up all the ends yet when it finishes you suddenly realize you’ve learnt about another culture. Likeable, yet not every ones cup of tea.

Original name : Sukkar Banat, A Lebanese film, released in India as part of NDTV's Lumiere series


rhythm fadia-maniar said...

did u see it in english or with subtitles

Anonymous said...

Hey something I would enjoy watching.. Loved ur review and am looking forward to watching it soon.. Thanks, Bee