In The Land Chahine focuses his lens on the plight of the peasants in a small village exploited by a powerful local landowner, at a time that Britain and the corrupt Egyptian monarchy still run the country.
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It would seem impossible to assimilate the images and stories of The Land from a Western standpoint without a degree of fascination / excitement. We are not exactly drowning in quality cinema from the Arab world. However, beyond the cursory layer of ethnographic illumination, we are not getting much in the way of ... art. Chahine's concerns, it would seem, are gender, politics, and, well, the land. It's interesting.