‘Me and You’: Yemeni film depicts the suffering brought about by war on families
More films and video games expected on the back of these Arab Revolutions.
Me and You’ is a new Yemeni film produced by Aden Film of Artistic Production and Media. It discusses the disastrous consequences of wars and conflict on Yemenis, especially wives and daughters.
The film was shot in a rural area and paints a picture of the simple life of a farming people. It has been accepted as the first Yemeni film to participate in the Fourth Gulf Film Festival in Dubai starting on April 14th.
The film tries to promote the nice side of Yemeni nature, the traditional buildings and Yemenis’ kindness, according to Dr. Sameer Al-Afeef, director and screenwriter of the film.
“We expect we will win best film because we have presented a humanitarian message with professional techniques,” Al-Afeef said hopefully.
Speaking to the Yemen Times, Al-Afeef indicated that ‘Me and You’ sheds light on the misery Yemenis suffer during wars and conflicts in real and humanitarian way.
“It clearly shows the fear of Yemenis during wars, and how happiness and playtime disappear when war has broken out,” he said.
According to Al-Afeef, the film aims to convey a message about the families of martyrs during war. How the death of a breadwinner impacts upon their family, putting them through severe suffering and financial hardship that can end up destroying their lives.
“We want to say ‘no’ to wars and conflicts. We want to live safely,” Al-Afeef said. “In Yemen, when the breadwinner dies, his families’ life is completely destroyed.”
Al-Afeef said that shooting the film in Thula district of Hajja governorate seemed a natural location. The local people in Thula contributed to the success of the film. “They participated in the film as organizers and secondary actors.”
Nader Al-Madhhaji, production manager of the film, told the Yemen Times that the film hired professional staff and talented new actors and actresses.
“We aim to produce Yemeni films that are different from those previously made. We made a big effort in this film to represent Yemeni art in a good way,” he said. “We brought in new actors and actresses. We have in Yemen good actors and professional cameramen, but they need to encouragement and support.”
“We hope that cinema in Yemen will change our life and help solve our problems. We also hope that our government will become interested in cinema and will allow the building of cinemas,” said Al-Madhhaji.
“We expect that Yemeni cinema will flourish in the future. Cinema is critical and should be presented strongly in Yemen, because we have many issues that need to be shown through cinema,” he said. “Cinema in Yemen will contribute highly to resolving our problems.”
An eight-year-old girl, Manal Mahmood, is the main character in the film. The film depicts how she suffers from the death of her father during wartime. She asks sorrowfully in the film: “Why did you take my father from me?”
According to Al-Afeef, ‘Me and You’ will be shown at the end of April on all Yemeni channels.
By Sadeq Al-Wesabi
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