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Essay on Youssef Chahines Filmmaking Techniques

Date:  2021-05-21 12:25:35
2 pages  (468 words)
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Youssef Chahine, an Egyptian filmmaker, was arguably one of Arab cinemas most influential personalities (Chahine, 2004). His films plausibly portrayed a link between the past and the present of the Alexandria, his city, and Egypt (Osman, 2008). Be that as it may, the filmmaker was constantly accused of adopting a westernized aspect in his films. Contrary to these accusations, his 1969 film called Al-Ard was based on the foundation of the tumultuous period of Gamal Abdel Nasser (Chahine, 2004). The film recounts the account of a gathering of Egyptian workers attempting to hold their property in the face of the handled nobility's endeavors to keep up its harsh rule. Through efficient use of time in this movie, Youssef brought to screen the daily lives of the troubled farmers, airing their cries and woes.

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While time is an abstract concept, objects connected with time are exceptionally concrete (Kant, 1781). As a result, clocks, calendars, dawns, night falls, occasional changes, and the progression of time can be effortlessly deduced from symbolism. Numerous techniques use imagery and symbolism successfully. For instance, Youssef Chahine's film Saladin employs reverse symbolism. In the movie, it is evident that the interpretation of historical events is the converse of acquired perceptions in the West. All things considered, the distortions realized by such a circumstance did not keep the advancement of shared impact. Here, the filmmaker used reverse symbolism to illustrate the current contemporary times depicted by the third crusade where development by the West saw the improvement of a belief system in light of western social prevalence, which was the foundation of its relations with others.


In synopsis, the thesis statement illustrated by the backdrop above incorporates the definition of time on cinema using examples from Youssef Chahines movies. In so doing, it is apparent that analysis of a film necessitates the comprehension of the progression of time through the movement of the storyline and scenes. More often than not, the audience is excessively engaged with the stream of the storyline that they fail to pay heed to the unapparent aspects in the background due to their primary focus in the foreground. Analysis of various films by Youssef Chahine illustrates the significance of time as a fundamental representation, lying at the establishment of instincts.


BIBLIOGRAPHY Cinema of the World. (2011). Youssef Chahine Al-ard aka The Land (1969). Retrieved from Cinema of the World:

Deleuze, G. (1989). The Time-Image: Cinema 2. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.

Haydock, N., & Risden, E. L. (2009). Hollywood in the Holy Land: Essays on Film Depictions of the Crusades and Christian-Muslim Clashes. McFarland.

Kant, I. (1781). Critique of Pure Reason.

Osman, T. (2008, July 30). Youssef Chahine, the life-world of film. Retrieved from OpenDemocracy:

Youssef Chahine. (2004). Retrieved from Encyclopedia of World Biography:

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