This year at Toronto International Film Festival a retrospective, Here and Now: Contemporary Arab Women Filmmakers was held, casting a spotlight on the largely under screened cinema of the Middle East and North Africa. Showcasing the likes of Saudi-Arabia’s Haifaa Al-Mansour, Lebabon’s Nadine Labaki, Syria’s Soudadi Kadaan as well as Tunisia’s Raja Amari.
The programme celebrates female filmmakers from within the MENA region which is rich with female-filmmakers and female-centred stories and which has been at the forefront of feminist filmmaking far longer and far more powerfully than the vast majority of Western cinema. To celebrate this retrospective I will be taking a closer look at feminist filmmaking within Tunisia through Raja Amari’s “Red Satin” (2002), examining her deeply empowering use of the female gaze when depicting desire, sexuality and freedom. Continue reading TIFF Arab Women Filmmakers Retrospective: Desire, Sexuality and Freedom in Raja Amari’s “Red Satin”