10:00am, 2:30pm, 5:00pm, 7:15pm
Wadjda, played by Waad Mohammed, wears her spunkiness not on the sleeve of the black abaya she must wear in public but in the scuffed Chuck Taylors with purple shoelaces she wears under it. Given a fairly long leash by a stressed working mother — played by Reem Abdullah, a well-known television actress — who is distracted by her straying husband, Wadjda makes pop music cassette mix tapes and befriends a teasing bike-riding boy. Their innocent mutual friendship is contrasted with an adult world that preaches female subservience because, as Wadjda is taught at the all-girls school by a frowning headmistress, "a woman's voice is her nakedness." When begging her mother for the bike fails, she makes home made yarn bracelets to sell at school to earn money to buy it. And although she is a mediocre student, she leaps at the chance to receive a cash prize by winning a contest to memorize verses of the Qur'an, while discovering that even in this, the playing field is not level. While the bicycle she yearns for at the Saudi corner five-and-dime store is a metaphor for the freedoms denied Saudi women, it seems unfair to put this huge burden on such tiny shoulders. Because it can also be seen as a tactile response to a thing of beauty — emerald-green frame with rainbow-colored streamers fluttering from its handlebars — that is as personal as it is universal. She is not so much consciously rebelling against authority as expressing individuality like a Saudi Lisa Simpson, in a country where doing so is discouraged or prohibited.
A warm, winning, restless film...Beautiful, modestly progressive and heartfelt, with a wonderful, brash central performance from first-timer Waad Mohammed. Jim Schembri 3AW
This charming and deceptively simple film about a rebellious young Saudi girl with a dream that defies the culture in which she lives, is a breath of fresh air; the insight into lifestyle and culture fascinating, Louise Keller, Urban Cinefile
It's a provocative but credible premise and in exploring it, Al Mansour has come up with an engagingly subversive character. Wadjda is a delight. Sandra Hall, SMH
Running time 98 minutes
Directed By: Haifaa Al-Mansour
Please be advised that random checks of Membership Cards will be conducted at future screenings.
Nambour Arthouse Cinema
The Sunshine Coast French Film Festival will be screened from 2nd to 4th May. For details go to : www.scvenuesandevents.com.au
Noosa 5 Cinemas continues the Metropolitan Opera series with La Boehme on 3rd and 4th May. There will be a special Advanced Screening of Broadway's Romeo and Juliet with Orlando Bloom on Mothers' Day Sunday 11th May at 1:30pm, with further screenings on 17th and18th May. For more details, ask at the Box Office.
23rd April, 7th & 21st May, 4th & 18th June, 16th July & 30th July, 13th August & 27th August, 10th September, 8th October & 22nd October, 5th November & 19th November, 3rd December
For more information and tickets ask at the Box Office.