In the beginning of the Twentieth Century, in Arabia, Emir Nesib of Hobeika defeats Sultan Amar of Salma after years of war between their tribes and they make a peace treaty creating "The Yellow Belt", a large no man's land that would separate their lands and would not belong to neither of them. Further, Nesib demands the sons of Amar, Saleh and Auda, to be raised together with his children Tarik and Leyla by him in Hobeika as a guarantee of their agreement. Fifteen years later, representatives of the Texas Oil find oil in the Yellow Belt and the modern and liberal Emir Nesib sees the opportunity to improve and modernize the life of his tribe, building hospitals and schools, and the American Company begins the exploitation of the oil field, violating the peace pact. Nasib sends a representative to make an agreement with the fundamentalist Sultan Amar, but he does not accept the offer. Saleh decides to travel to Salma to talk to his father and kills his two companions, but he is ...Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Filming took place in Tunisia during the Jasmine Revolution that led to the overthrow of President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali. Filming finished on-schedule and on-budget with no interference. See more »
Here are my terms: All I want is your friendship.
And my sons.
Insurance for both of us. As long as they are uder my roof...
I cannot make war with you.
But the sword cuts both ways. We can't make war with you, either. Your sons will be our bond for peace.
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I saw this movie yesterday on TV and I was instantly captured by its slow start showing the remains of the battle between the two kings. The movie tells the story of the beginning of oil extraction somewhere in the Arabic world. The clash between the strong traditional Islam and the modern western culture is the main thread of the movie. In the end these two worlds blend leaving hope for the best of each to occur. This is a movie contradictory with "classical" anti-American orientation of the Islamic people. Quite a story to tell about honesty, trust, greed, love and friendship. There are several actors to remark in this movie: - The well know Banderas as Emir Nessib is performing as expected for a star of his caliber. His portrays a deceiving king that becomes addicted to become reach by selling the oil from the "Yellow Bent", a piece of desert disputed for centuries between him and Namar. He makes use of everything to argue his actions, including the Coran, his daughter, his sons. - Mark Strong as king Namar produces the biggest impression on me. If I were to imagine a Bedouin warrior king, that would be him. He speaks words of memorable wisdom (a plus for the script) and portrays the "just" leader who keeps his word, lives in honor, respecting the tradition of the Coran. He is also the rigid traditionalist, imposing stupid rules to his people through questionable interpretation of the Coran (like western medicine prohibition). - Tahar Rahim - is the main character of the movie, seeing him evolving from the geek prince Auda surrounded by books to the true leader uniting all the tribes in the end. He is a versatile actor and performs very convincing. - Freida Pinto as princess Leyla is not so convincing, apart from her beauty, keeps alive the myth of "beatiful Arab women", takes part in the conventional end of the plot. - Eriq Ebouaney is remarkable in the secondary role of long time loyal general Hassan Dakhill. The scene in which he is discovered to be held prisoner by Nessib and freed by Auda is memorable. In conclusion, this movies deserves a 7 out of 10, not a masterpiece, but certainly a good movie with minor flaws proving that you don't need a swarm of good looking stars and special effects to make a good movie.
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