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NHNew Horizons / Afaq Jadida Competition

Sea Shadow

Sea Shadow

Original Title: Dhil al Bahr
Director: Nawaf Al-Janahi
United Arab Emirates | Arabic
2011 | 98min. | Colour
Subtitles: English
Format: DCP
All Ages
Director Nawaf Al-Janahi continues to raise the profile of UAE cinema with his latest work. In this charmingly low-key follow-up to his 2009 debut feature The Circle (one of the first by an Emirati to receive international attention), Al-Janahi combines a nostalgic tone with genuine cultural insight. Sea Shadow is an endearing coming-of-age story about family, first love and the deeply rooted values of the region. The first feature from ImageNation Abu Dhabi to be made in the UAE by an Emirati director (the film was shot in Ras Al Khaimah), it signals the coming-of-age of filmmaking in the capital.

From a small seaside community in all the way to Abu Dhabi, the story follows two teenagers who commence a journey of self-discovery after their life is shaken by misunderstandings, mix-ups and poor decisions. Small-town boy Mansoor (Omar Al Mulla) has strong feelings for his neighbor, Kaltham (Neven Madi). But culture and convention, as well as family hardship, make it difficult for him to express himself openly. When his know-it-all friend Sultan (Abrar Al Hamad) convinces him that a gift is the best way to express his love, Mansoor looks for ways to save money without arousing the suspicion of his family. Bound by deeply rooted values, this pair must find the courage to forge their own paths.

With a simple story unfolding at a gentle pace, Al-Janahi creates a longing for a time when life was more about community than materialism. The work of an intriguing new voice in a largely untapped region, Sea Shadow examines how values are prioritized in modern society, and how human connections are made.

–Intishal Al Timimi

Director,  Nawaf Al-Janahi

Director,  Nawaf Al-Janahi

Nawaf Al-Janahi was born in Abu Dhabi. He studied the art of cinema in the United States, and became integral member of the nascent Emirati film movement, contributing shorts like On a Road (2003) and Souls (2004) to the pioneering Emirates Film Competition, and founding the UAE’s first online film community. His short Mirrors of Silence (2006) was selected for a number of international festivals; his feature debut, The Circle (2009) was one of the first Emirati features to receive attention overseas. Sea Shadow (2011) is his second feature film.

Cast and Crew

Director
Nawaf Al-Janahi
Cast
Omar Al Mulla, Neven Madi, Abrar Al Hamad, Khadeeja Al Taie, Aisha Abdulrahman, Ahmad Iraj
Production Company
ImageNation Abu Dhabi
Music
Ibrahim Amiri
Producer
Rami Yasin, Daniela Tully
Executive Producer
Stefan Brunner
Screenwriter
Mohamad Hassan Ahmad
Editor
Tony Ruhnam, Raul Skopecz
Cinematographer
Paulo Ares
Sound
Sam Kashefi
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