Cinematic works in the Arab world, unified only by language, differ in their artfulness and their format both among countries and within each country. Equally, even countries with long-established cinema cultures have witnessed ups and downs. Thus we can observe that ‘Egyptian Neo-Realism’ emerged at the end of the last century to counter the decline in Egyptian cinema, once known for its nobility and rootedness. Contemporary ‘Arab Cinema’ is not only about artfulness; it also unveils the sufferings, concerns and interests of people through technical and cognitive development as well as innovative ideas. The most prominent actors in this genre in the Middle East are Egypt, Syria, Lebanon and Palestine. However, young directors in the Gulf region are seeking to acquire experience and professionalism, notably in Saudi Arabia where restrictions on daily life have become an incentive for rebellion and creativity. In addition, the Arab Maghreb countries have made great cinematic contributions, using their own methods and experiences, along with modern technology, to shed light on current political and humanitarian situations in the Arab world. Today, cinematic works are confronting censorship and oppression (due to political or religious reasons), not only in conservative countries such as Saudi Arabia but also in Arab states usually considered ‘liberated’ and ‘democratic’ like Tunisia, Morocco and Lebanon.

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