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Amra and the Second Marriage

When a middle-aged housewife learns her husband will take a second, younger spouse, she’s forced into drastic measures in this radical Saudi Arabian black comedy.

Dir-Scr Mahmoud Sabbagh
Prod Mahmoud Sabbagh, Anas Batahaf
With Alshaima’a Tayeb, Mohammed Alhamdan, Khairia Nazmi
Saudi Arabia
2018
95min
Sales MPM Premium
Subtitles

While her husband spends much of his professional life away, Amra toils hard on an ever-tightening budget to provide for her three daughters and ailing mother. What she failed to provide her husband with was a son; it has brought shame on the family, according to her spiteful mother-in-law. So shameful, in fact, that it justifies the husband taking a glamorous, younger wife. Even Amra’s largely female community endorses this new situation. If devout prayer and swallowed pride offer scant salvation for Amra, perhaps righteous retribution will. Mahmoud Sabbagh’s delightful romcom Barakah Meets Barakah played in LFF 2016 to great success. His tougher follow-up exposes conflicted Saudi mores and evinces a Coen brothers-esque relish for attacking sacred cows and cultural hypocrisy with irony and a rapier wit.

Leigh Singer

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