Sunday, October 14, 2007

Arab leading newspaper on Hollywood movie "The Kingdom"

"The Kingdom: Where Hollywood Movie Making and Saudi Realities Meet"

"Prior to watching a private screening of 'The Kingdom', I was under the preconceived notion that it would depict Arabs and Muslims in a negative light.

“'This will be another one of those films which portrays us as terrorists, and Americans, as usual, will come to save the day,' I thought to myself as I prepared to watch this new Hollywood blockbuster, the plot of which centers around a terrorist attack that hits a Western compound in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, and the retaliation of a team of FBI agents who make a secret trip to Saudi Arabia to find those accountable.

"I sat there holding my notebook, ready to pounce at the first inaccuracy however; despite some aspects which might be perceived by some as negative, many might be pleasantly surprised after watching this film, bearing in mind that Arabs have for a long time been among Hollywood's favorite villains. [...]

"In all cases, the film is definitely action-packed, and perhaps Saudis and Arabs may enjoy it more than Americans, as events are depicted as taking place in the Saudi capital…and it is not every day that you watch a Hollywood-style car chase happening on the streets of Riyadh. For Westerners, the movie might be an interesting 'insight' to a culture that is very different to their own, but most importantly it builds on the similarities between moderates in the West and in the Middle East, and the lingering threat of terrorism to both worlds."
Source: Asharq Al-Awsat (Saudi owned, based in London), By Faisal Abbas