A velvet-clothed though biting commentary on how Egypt’s poor always get screwed

Variety 11 January 2016

Sharp social critique infuses the populist Egyptian cinema stylings of “Nawara,” a velvet-clothed yet biting commentary on how the poor always get screwed. Director-scripter Hala Khalil (“Cut & Paste”) sets her story just after the 2011 Revolution, focusing on a good-natured maid working for a wealthy, politically connected family in an exclusive Cairo gated community. For viewers outside the region unused to traditional Egyptian melodrama tropes, the unmodulated lighting and expansive behavior of some characters will be off-putting, but many pointed references to current local woes, along with the award-winning performance of star Menna Shalabi, should translate to big box office at home.