This idiot post first appeared here on September 15, 2012.
This is our unique feature where Grunt watches terrible movies to pay off his chick flick debt, but his wife sleeps through them anyway, so he doesn’t get credit, but at least he can warn you about them. Tonight’s Selection: Cairo Time
Well, this one is timely, for obvious reasons. This excruciating little Canadian Indie film was made during the pre-Muslim Brotherhood days when Cairo was only mildly dangerous for American women to be roaming the streets looking for slutty affairs with dark and mysterious handsome strangers. Actually, this movie is not about slutty affairs; in fact, you could say it displays some honorableness. It is also chock full of beautiful HD scenery in one of the most significant and enigmatic places on the planet. I’m glad I saw it. However, you shouldn’t under any circumstances see the whole thing. This is one of those movies that is only safe to see with one thumb firmly planted on the FF button, and I’m not just talking to the guys. This movie is especially dangerous for women, IMHO. No matter what your life situation, no matter where you are romantically or psychologically, whether you are pre-f*c$ed-up or not, this movie will traumatize you if you see the whole thing. You will just have to trust me on this. Your psychological well-being depends on this. The minute you see a slow part where any ennui (that’s French – look it up) or essentially any slow or halting conversation of any kind is happening, you MUST hit the FF button. If you do this, and enjoy the stunning scenic splendor of Cairo and Giza and even some of Gaza, you can walk away with your eyes open, your intellect stimulated and your soul intact.
However, if you are looking for irony or a good cry, you can always listen to all the stupid dialog, but I’m warning you; and I’m gonna spoil it for you right now, so you best turn away if you don’t want to know. Nothing happens. Ever. There is no actual affair. Nothing occurs except that we finally find out that her husband, Mark, is a consummate douche-master who doesn’t deserve her. She is a decent enough woman, even if she edits a stupid fashion magazine and is basically a miserable, clueless liberal. Tariq is the hero, who is an honorable Egyptian man who apparently represents about 0.000000001% of the male population of Cairo. Having worked for the UN, that makes his honorableness even less likely, but that’s the way he’s portrayed nonetheless. Having said all this and condemning the story for the hollow, pain-fest that it is, I was actually impressed with the writers for being apparently very honest in their presentation of the complexities of Egyptian reality. There is very little political bias, even against the Israelis, who appear briefly in the film. So there’s that. Otherwise, enjoy. 🙂