SUCHITRA’S Media Wing
Director: Mohamed DiabScreening and Panel Discussion
Pratibha Nandakumar, Poet
Pampa Chowdhury. Branch Head at Concern India Foundation
Moderated by Rashmi Vallabhajosyula, Entrepreneur
ABOUT THE FILM:
The film is about three women and their struggles with sexual harassment . The film took top prize in the 2010 Dubai International Film Festival. The filmmaker had to publicly deny that he had any intent to defame Egypt and assert that the issues are universal. The filmmaker had to even argue against banning of the film on the grounds that it could incite women to injure men in their sensitive parts with sharp tools.
Critic Haisam Abu-Samra writes (excerpts):
“678 is… a thoughtful study that leaves the gravity of the issue to speak for itself.
“678 provides some objective insight into the dynamics of sexual harassment … and the fostering environment that made it possible in the first place.
“All three women go through one or multiple incidents of traumatising sexual harassment. The incidents themselves aren’t exceptionally tragic; they’re even mild compared to the harassment stories that we’ve become used to hearing about. However, these incidents have upsetting physiological effects on the women, crippling them emotionally and functionally to the point that they transform into ghosts of their former selves.
“By focusing on the personal aspect of these women’s stories, 678 resonates on a large scale. It’s in these small moments where glimpses of their humanity become so apparent and immersive…
“Writer-director Diab shows restraint as a filmmaker by avoiding broad theatrics and melodrama for the most part. He also captures Cairo’s chaotic spirit with an authenticity rarely ever seen in Egyptian films.
“678 can be unsettling at times but it’s never uncomfortable. It doesn’t reach for an easy resolution or provide the answers. Rather than pointing a finger or looking for someone to blame, 678 takes a introspective look at a society plagued with contradictions and self-conflict, then the film invites its audience to take a second look around.”
(Courtesy: Cairo 360)