5 Influential Movies About Women‘s Rights in the Egyptian Cinema

les femmes du bus 678

In the Arab world, March is the month of Woman شْهْر المَرْأةby excellenceبامتياز Not only Women’s Day is celebrated internationally on the 8th of March, but also the 21st of March happens to be the Mother’s Day.


Therefore we would like to take to opportunity to mention some of the films that discussed women issues and played a leading role in changing the society’s way of thinking or at least sparked a conversation in the community.

مراتي مدير عام
My Wife is a General Manager

My Wife is a General Manager

Production year: 1966

Director: Fateen Abdul Wahab

Couple: Esmat and Hussein

Actors: Shadia and Salah Zulfikar

“Hussein”, played by Salah Zulfikar, who works as an engineer مُهَنْدِس in a contracting company شَرِكَة مُقَاوَلات couldn’t handle the fact that his wife “Esmat”, played by Shadia became his manager at work.

Although the husband was very supportive دَاعِم at the beginning to his wife’s career, the new promotion التَرْقِيَة turned their life upside down. From this change stemmed many funny and comedy situations at home and at work with their colleagues.

The movie contributed to changing the views of the Egyptian society on women’s work.


“Esmat” the wife’s name wasn’t accidentally بالصُدْفَة chosen. In Arabic it can be both a woman’s and a man’s name.

أريد حلاً
I Want a Solution

I Want a Solution

Production year: 1975

Director: Said Marzouk

Couple: Doreyya and Medhat

Actors: Faten Hamama and Rushdie Abaza

“I want a Solution” tells the story of a woman’s struggle to get a divorceطَلَاق after life between her and her husband became impossible مُسْتَحِيلَة . Unfortunately مَعَ الأَسَف , the court took the husband’s side especially after the latter brought false witnessesشُهُود to support his case. The film sheds the light on the laws governing marriage and divorce in Egypt and criticizes their injustice against women.

The film contributed to changing the personal status law in Egypt قَانُون الأحْوَال الشَخْصِيَّة. Women were then given the right of conditioned divorce الخلع , providing that financial benefits and rights were given up by them.

عفوًا أيها القانون
Excuse me, law.
Afon Ayoha Al Qanoon

Excuse me, law.

Production year: 1985

Director: Inas Aldeghidy

Couple: Huda and Ali

Actors: Najlaa Fathi and Mahmoud Abdul Aziz
Based on true story

The wife caught her husband cheating with his lover in their bed so she shoots both of them under the shock تَحْت تأثير الصَّدْمة . While, the law states the release of men in honor cases, “Huda” the wife, played by Naglaa Fathi , was sentencedحُكِمَ عَلَيهَا to 15 years of imprisonment.. The film caused a rise in the voices of jurists, demanding gender equality المُسَاوَاة بَين الجِنْسَين, especially since the psychological damage الضَّرر النَّفْسِيto both genders is equal regarding disloyalty .

إحكى يا شهرزاد
Scherhazade, tell me a story

Scherhazade, tell me a story

Production year: 2009

Director: Yousry Nasrallah

Couple: Heba and Karim

Actors: Mona Zaki and Hassan Al Radad

“Heba” played by Mona Zaki is a famous TV presenterمُقَدِمَة تِليفِزْيُونِيَة who is interested in women’s issues قَضِايا المَرأة . Her program tells the story of 3 women and exposes the society’s views on them. The controversies that her program raises cast the shadow over her marriage and cause her to become one of the victims الضَحَاياof whom she tells the story.

ستة سابعة تمانية
Six seven eight

El Cairo, 678

Production year: 2010

Director: Mohamed Diab

Main characters: Faiza, Saba, Essam and Nelly

Actors: Boshra, Nelly Karim, Majid Al-Kedwani and Nahed Al-Sibai

The film’s name is derived from the number of one of the buses where a woman is constantly harassed by a man. The film addresses sexual harassmentالتَّحَرُّش الحٍنسي and presents the stories of three women from different social levels: Faiza, Nelly, and Saba. The film follows the three frustrated women and exposes the authorities’ reluctance to make their demandsمَطالِب and help them. The film made a booming and got different rewards from Sydney Film Festival, 2011, Taormina Festival in Sicily, Italy, 2011 and Heartland Festival in America.

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