7:30 PM, 6th July, 2023
Adam (Tawfeek Barhom), a fisherman’s son in the Egyptian town of Manzala, is overjoyed when he receives state sponsorship to study at the prestigious Al-Azhar University in Cairo. Shortly after his arrival, however, the university’s Grand Imam suddenly drops dead while addressing the student body. A deadly power struggle to replace him soon ensues, with Adam – recruited by an intelligence agent (Fares Fares) to influence the selection – at the centre of it all.
Superbly realised by Swedish-Egyptian director Tarik Saleh, and submitted by Sweden as its Best International Film Oscar contender, this is a bold, paranoid political thriller reminiscent of John le Carré’s spy tales set within the corridors of Egypt’s hallowed religious and secular institutions.