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Review: In ‘Sins of the Flesh,’ One Prison Replaces Another


Nahed El Sebai and Ahmed Abdala Mahomud as enthusiasts in “Sins of the Flesh.”

ArtMattan Films

“Sins of the Flesh,” an Egyptian function from Khaled El Hagar, opens with Ali (Ahmed Abdala Mahomud) on the run, having escaped jail seven years right into a 25-year sentence for a homicide that can have concerned extenuating instances. Hiding out, he's taking a task along a cousin, a farmworker named Hassan (Mahmoud El Bezawi). Hassan’s boss, Mourad (Zaki Faten), a revered landowner, turns out respectable sufficient to start with: He permits Ali to stick. But he additionally counts on overall subservience.

Complicating the claustrophobic association is the undeniable fact that Hassan has married Ali’s outdated flame, Fatma (Nahed El Sebai). She nonetheless longs for Ali, a strapping, good-looking distinction to her sort however ineffectual husband, whilst the oblivious Hassan tries to organize a wedding for his cousin.

What follows combines somewhat of James M. Cain and somewhat of “Macbeth” — and greater than somewhat of topicality, since the occasions in the movie, regardless that they spread clear of Cairo, overlap with the Tahrir Square demonstrations of 2011. (The revolution weighs closely on the rich Mourad and divides him politically from his kids.)

But the film is reasonably worked and repetitive as a work of screenwriting, spelling out motivations when the energy of recommendation would possibly cross additional, and its purported allegorical dimensions don’t come throughout obviously. No doubt subtleties were misplaced in translation, however the movie is easiest considered as an overripe, noir-tinged tragedy.

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