The Definitive Guide to Living in the Capital , Cairo , Egypt

Al Maslaha

El Maslaha: Generic Egyptian Action Flick

  • Ahmed El SakkaAhmed Ezz...
  • Mystery & SuspenseThriller
  • Sandra Nashaat
reviewed by
Yasmin Shehab
rate it
review it
El Maslaha: Generic Egyptian  Action Flick

Ahmed
Sakka and Ahmed Ezz’s film roles overlap for the first time in this run of the
mill tale of a policeman versus a drug kingpin. Based on a true story, the film revolves around Hamza (Sakka), a policeman out for revenge. His recently wed
brother, who had also been an officer, was killed by a drug dealer while on
duty. Before justice could be served, the criminal’s brother, Salem (Ezz), the
biggest drug kingpin in Sinai, busts him out of jail and wipes all trace of him
off of the face of the Earth. Hamza requests to be transferred to the narcotics
division and goes after Salem, trying his best to catch him and find out where
he’s hidden his brother.

There’s
really nothing very special about this film; it could easily pass for any of
the dozens of B-list thrillers that Hollywood pumps out every year. To nobody’s
surprise, Sakka plays the same character he always does: the cocky tough guy. Though,
in this film, his defining trait is his love for his brother. Everything else
about him is an enigma, not a particularly interesting one but an enigma
nonetheless.

Ezz
stretches his range a bit and plays sleazy character instead of a charming one,
though he shares the brotherly love aspect with Sakka. His character is a bit
more fleshed out than Sakka’s and he’s definitely the more successful actor of
the two.

Pretty
much every female role is window dressing. Case in point, Hamza’s brother’s
widow is shown to be a significant part of the family before his death. After
he kicks the bucket though, she mysteriously vanishes from the plot. Her
purpose is to make the death seem tragic, though honestly if they’d wanted to
do that they could have made it clear that the death was actually a murder. The
editing made it seem like it was a car accident and not a deliberate shooting.

Zeina
is another example of how shallow the female characters are. She plays the
murderer’s girlfriend and is used solely as a way for Salem to prove how much
of a creep he is by lusting after her. Hanan Turk and Kinda Alloush round up the
female cast members and are similarly underused.

The
real kicker though is that the film is rather old fashioned. At one point, Hazem
suggests using two different walkie-talkies. An old one, which the mob had
tapped, was going to be used to broadcast false information; a new one would be
used to coordinate the police team’s real plans. This is as smart as the film
gets and this suggestion was treated as a brainwave.

The plot
is also occasionally unclear. We mentioned the vague murder, which is a
travesty seeing as it kicks off the entire film, but the final showdown is also
rather muddled. It’s just really hard to keep track of what’s going on even
though not a lot is happening.

On
the plus side, the film is sprinkled with a few good laughs and has an ending
that leaves you oddly satisfied. Another really great point is that the film
doesn’t buy into stereotypes about Bedouins and revenge. Both leads are equally
obsessed with revenge but it’s portrayed more as brotherly love instead of an issue
of family honour.

Those
assuming that these two actors coming together would result in something
exceptionally entertaining will be in for a disappointment, since both actors
have solo films that are far more interesting.

Like This? Try

Malaky Eskenderia, Al Rahina, Mafia

360 Tip

This is Ahmed Ezz and Sandra Nashaat’s fourth consecutive film together.

Write your review

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

recommended