Asmaa (2011) Poster


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a sad yet inspirational story
screamonly25 June 2012
During years and years of watching and tuning into a movie addict; I got used to movie stories, Director methods, editing and cinematography styles and twists but every now and then; a movie comes and challenge all that.

It doesn't really challenge it with the new effects and methods provided, but with the story building, characters and the heart investment in that movie.

And that's what happened with the movie "Asmaa" a movie that came to retrieve my own faith in the Arabic and Egyptian Cinema. The movie was basically an independent effort to resurrect a dead story and give life to that thrown newspaper or medical files that once held the details of a real human being that lived upon us.

The true story was reborn again through the camera and imagination of its Director (Amr Salama) and the people working on this movie; as we see (Asmaa – brilliantly portrayed by Hind Sabry) a woman who accepted what was written in her Faith dealing with the HIV virus however trying hard to protect and survive her surrounding through her good yet stubborn heart and mind.

Through the shaking camera movement the director toke us on a journey telling the story of a woman who fought her way delivering her message through the colorful scenes that reflected on smiling tearful faces of the audience just before taking us back to that awful truth that people trying to ignore or deal with it with judgment before finding the solution.

A great portray of the Egyptian (and Middle Eastern) society and its way of dealing with a matter that is considered to be out side the box or consideration.

It's hard to go deeper with this movie description without rescuing any spoilers in this story that was full of raw human emotions.

A great salute to each person who worked on this movie and for delivering such a message to ask each one of us; a love letter to look at our own reflections before judging what is around us.
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She's HIV Positive ,She's living with it ,She wants others to accept her that she stills alive ..
mogohary12 February 2012
Always high expectations makes it harder to reach but before going to the movies theater to watch this movie I guaranty that You will get a feeling during and after the end ,that feeling when You see a good movie and You want it never ends and after it that feeling that there is a hope ,It's not just a story of someone suffer from a disease accepting and living with it alone but It's about someone suffer from the negativity of the society and the way the people deals .. all Actors specially Hend Sabry and Maged El Kedwani did a great job ,the directing was so professionally I'm really Proud of Him and I'll wait for he's next movie ..
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Beautiful, poignant story about a woman versus a culture
Mae Z5 November 2012
This film is just as uplifting as it is tragic. Amr Salama brings up HIV/AIDS in a society that typically shunned or turned a blind eye to the issue. A woman contracting HIV, in a conservative community that associates the disease with either a sexually transmitted infection from an extra marital affair or drug use injection, has to deal with not only what the disease is doing to her body, but also with the way people will punish her if they found out she has it. This poignant drama promises an honest perspective into the Egyptian culture and the average Egyptian's perspective on such delicate and taboo issues.

Although it may be a long road ahead, Salama definitely helped raise awareness and maybe even recede the social stigma associated with HIV/AIDS in some way. A beautiful performance by Hend Sabry was able to evoke empathy and compassion towards people with the disease in a ruthless community that can't help but look down on them. This is a must-see, and if you think it might be too depressing for your taste, don't worry. Maged ElKedwany's equally brilliant performance will either downright crack you up or at least put a smile on your face a few times throughout the movie. Have fun!
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A wonderful film
Hassan Fahmi17 October 2012
When you find out this movie is about an HIV positive woman, you expect a depressing movie. But when you actually watch this film, you get positive energy, optimism, and a wonderful feeling. This is cinema as it should be: wonderfully written and beautifully directed. The lead actors are amazing. Hind Sabry is more believable as a lower class woman than so many Egyptian actresses. Kedwany's performance is a treat. The cinematography, the music, and art direction are all top class. The way the story is structured with the back and forth movement through the timeline keeps you on your toes all the time, with an amazing surprise twist at the end. All in all, an amazing film that is a must see.
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Amazing Movie
Noha Fathy5 November 2012
Warning: Spoilers
Asmaa is one of the rare movies that really touches and describes the Egyptian society ...not just its problems ...but how strong is the Egyptian woman ..through the movie, Asmaa went through thousand of downs and nothing could ever hurt her dignity and pride ... and the last speech of her in the film is really touching and i didn't forget how it touched my soul and how silent was the audience in the theater ...

Actually it was the first time for me to look at Hend Sabry as a professional actress .and for Amr Salama as an innovative Director ...I love the movie
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Missed Opportunity
Hani Abd5 November 2012
Asmaa is an impoverished Egyptian diagnosed with HIV, faced with the injustice of an unaware society that views the disease as a guaranteed death warrant. It does not stop there: Asmaa is also a women, making her journey much harder to endure.

All we really know about "Asmaa" is that its an attempt to tackle a long forgotten and dismissed taboo in Egypt. But tackling a taboo through a set of clichés will likely annoy viewers (like myself) and have a reverse effect.

The basis of the story gave the writer a excellent opportunity to expand and dig deep into the social, economic and political repercussions and consequences faced by HIV patients in Egypt.

The 96 minutes running time might have been the biggest flaw and dealt a fatal blow to the film, which suffered from a script that ineffectively blends together too many stories and ends up under developing each and every one of them.

Worn out clichés hurt the film badly. And example of this is the common and quite predictable television interview scene which has become the preferred alternative for a writer who is struggling creatively and stuck on a screenplay. ["Add in television interview scene." - "Add a shot of people staring at their TV stations as they watch the show." - Cut to: flashbacks scenes.] Sorry, but we have seen it before!

Story and writing-wise, her marriage story was so dull and uninteresting, it bored me (and lost my attention) by the second flashback. Likewise, her family and daughter storyline was insufficiently developed, leaving us with many unanswered question, and at times in utter confusion.

If there was ever a streak of genius in the movie, it was the lost opportunity to concentrate on group therapy sessions. There was so much (lost) potential there and regrettably, none were tackled appropriately. Instead, the writer left us with a few repetitive, uninspiring lines and little knowledge of how the disease actually affected the lives of the people we are listening to (or even Asmaa herself!).

Maged El Kedwany was undoubtedly the only attention-grabbing exciting character this movie produced. Too bad it was damaged by the tired and overused TV interview storyline.

Overall, at times I felt I was watching 678 with HIV replacing sexual harassment. Although Asmaa is mildly better than the mediocre 678, it suffers from much of the same weaknesses: an underdeveloped and weak screenplay and overacting (hint: Hend Sabry).

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imo9611 August 2014
Warning: Spoilers
It apparently sounds like Salama ran out of ideas while making this film. Despite that, I appreciated his previous film "A Day Like Today" and we entirely envisaged that he was a talented filmmaker, and a filmmaker like him, will be required in the future. We were mistaken , Asmaa's flaws instantly emerged. His characters are overacting, his script is senseless.The dialogue between characters seems improvised rather than written (including the interview scene which was entirely ridiculous). Salama has to release himself by creating a film with interesting ideas as well as developed characters. And that ending when Sabri ended up making everyone tear up. I was angry!

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i hate this movie
Karim Mo26 July 2013
first of all sorry for my English .....I always believe that going to watch a good movie(whatever the kind of the movie) leaves at the end you a nice feeling that there is still a space in this world for beauty and justice.

and unfortunately Asama made ​​me feel the opposite , not as a sad story but as how has been told.... if you want watch a very sad story told in obnoxious and superficial way , I recommend you watch this movie .. and I think the overrating 7.7 stars is a part of the antipathy of our insane realty,

PS. i am not a critic,, i am just a person who love the cinema so much
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A character you must have empathy for
Zoooma28 September 2014
Wonderful film from Egypt that is definitely amongst the better I have seen. It really makes me appreciate civilized society as screwed up as it is. In Cairo, people fear for their lives if they carry the AIDS virus. Asmaa was a strong woman, not afraid to stand up to a man in public, something so forbidden in Islamic culture. Things change and she becomes HIV positive. Her fear for her life is not from dying from AIDS, but potentially being killed if she's found out. Society is scared of people like her. Not only would she face ridicule and perhaps stoning but another problem is she will die without a simple gall bladder operation. The real woman this is based on did. Doctors there are woefully ignorant of the disease, obviously those who did not study in a western culture in modern universities; they're often unwilling to treat HIV/AIDS patients for other illnesses. In steps a savior who hopefully will help get Asmaa the treatment she needs and deserves as a human being. The film is not without is flaws, unfortunately – a couple unplayed out story lines and issues not discussed in depth enough give less background than could have been provided. Still I was so very able to empathize with our protagonist and feel what this movie is all about – equal rights, HIV or not! Middle Eastern Islamic culture needs to step out of the stone age in many ways. This is just one more way how people are treated so appallingly.

8.3 / 10 stars

--Zoooma, a Kat Pirate Screener
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