Feb 28, 2011

Oscars Oscars Oscaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaars

That's exactly how I feel about the Oscars every year! It's finally hereeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee... but what a boring ceremony that was! My favorite host till this day remains Jon Stewart, just bring him back! 2nd is Chris Rock (probably the Bush administration made his job easy that year). I don't really feel like writing in depth so I'll just agree/ disagree with the awards, oh and note to FOX MOVIES: I didn't wake up at 3 AM to miss any minute of the show and watch your stupid ads! and why is it that they have to keep saying: برعاية ?! can't they just play the ads? anyway..

Best Picture: The King's Speech | Can't Argue/ Really?.
Though it wasn't my favorite, neither was Black Swan. I think Inception was the film to win it! but hey to the second year on a row the Oscars proves it don't always make sense!. But thank heavens it wasn't The Social Network! and I have no idea why was True Grit among the nominated films for this category! can someone answer me? The Fighter was second favorite, even though I'm not a big fan of "sports films", but that one was good one, as well as 127 hours, another genre of films I wouldn't bother watching usually which proved me wrong.

Actor in a leading role: Colin Firth | well deserved.
I bought it, I remember thinking after watching the film that he nailed the role perfectly, though you can argue that all he had to do is to master the stammering and that was it! I agree with that, I mean Franco in 127 Hours had to explore so many emotions, often "tied" to one location, hell, one position to be accurate, I wouldn't have been surprised if he had won it. Jeff Bridges' character even though well played, but you feel that you had seen this kind of character over and over again, I love Javier Bardem but didn't get to watch the film yet so.. and Jesse Eisenberg was so convincing, I think it was a tough one to predict this year.

Actor in a supporting role: Christian Bale | Hell Yea!.
I never liked this guy, probably cuz I only watched his "Action" films, but from the 1st couple of minutes of The Fighter he moved in a good chamber in my head! brilliant acting just brilliant.

Actress in a leading role: Nat Portman | Booooooooo.
I need to watch the film again, let's just say.... yea, I need to watch it again maybe I'll edit the booo. u know what I just didn't like the film, or the huge buzz about it. why did it have to go that popular!? it made me want to hate it!.

Actress in a supporting role: Melissa Leo (or as I'd refer to her: Um Dicky) | Very well deserved!
I don't understand why Amy Adams (same film) was nominated as well! neither do I understand Helena Carter's nomination! mind you I love Helena but that role wasn't that outstanding, or maybe it's just me! Anyway, Melissa's role was well played and a joy to watch in every aspect. I secretly wished Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit) would win, she held herself really well acting before two huge stars and good actors (Jeff Bridges and Matt Damon).

Animated feature film: Toy Story 3 | I see.
I haven't watched any of the three films so yea! congrats I guess.

Art Direction: Alice in Wonderland | well deserved.
The film was a disappointment to me on a lot of levels, but thinking of art direction... it wasn't easy coming up with that, you gotta give credit when credit is due! Inception wasn't bad as well, I see why the other films were nominated, but I think I'm just drawn to wild imaginations and all-things unusual, things which make you go : How the fuck did he think of that!?!?!

Cinematography: Inception | 5awa Nawa Baglawa!
I was afraid The Black Swan would snatch this one! I think it was a serious competition, and I think 127 Hours should've replaced True Grit and got the nomination (at least).

Costume Design: Alice in Wonderland | Makes sense
It had to be that!

Direction: The King's Speech | Really?!
I wasn't blown away by the direction!! what's wrong with The Black Swan? even though I didn't love the film but the direction was a piece of work! again, True Grit continues to puzzle me being in this category as well! I prefer 127 Hours, that was brilliant direction on all levels!
Documentary feature film: Inside Job | hard luck Banksy!
I'm self proclaimed biggest Banksy fan among the people I know! dare I say in Jordan? Banksy fans?? hello.. do you copy? nevertheless, it's a serious category which I respect much, I need to watch the other ones nevertheless. I only watched Exit Through The Gift Shop (Thanks for the screening Makan).

Documentary short subject: Strangers no more 
I haven't seen any of them, will try to get all of them.

Film Editing: The Social Network | Whatever! 
I can't really claim that I know what "editing" is to critique films on that! but if it's just editing scenes into each other n stuff I think Black Swan should've taken the trophy no? or The Fighter for there were fights in the film? 

Sound Editing & Sound Mixing: Inception, Sound Mixing & Visual effects  | Well Deserved, Well Deserved, Well Deserved & Well Deserved
والسلام عليكم ورحمة الله

Original Score: The Social Network | Say whaaaaaaaa?
How and why the hell is it the social network? HAVE YOU SEEN 127 HOURS? The music in 127 hours was brilliant, spot on, it helped the scenes it was part of every scene, this was a real shocker to me.

Original Song: Toy Story 3 | I don't know
I haven't seen the film yet, and only watched 127 Hrs from the nominated films, nevertheless, A.R Rahman is a genius, but he won last year for Slumdog Millionere so الجايات أكثر من الرايحات يا عبدالرحمن

Adapted Screen Play: The Social Network | well deserved
Whenever someone asked me how did I like The Social Network I'd say: I didn't really watch a "film", I just enjoyed "the story". And I didn't read the original books so I can't argue that 127 Hrs should've won for instance!.

Original Screen Play: The King's Speech | Fair enough
Even though Inception was more original and personally appealing to me.

Alright, that was me! what was your favorites/ disappointments/ predictions??
See ya in next year's Oscars post.

Feb 17, 2011

Egypt, Jordan, # and my cap

Talking about the Egyptian revolution now might seem a little too late for some, but I never blog because I feel "I have to", I blog because I feel I have something to share. Ever since the "anti-Rifa'ee" demonstration(s) started and through out the Egyptian revolution, I've been amazed by people's reactions to whatever is going on as events unfolded, not only on a general level, but on a very personal one as well, and that's what I'd be listing today, what it all meant to me.

1) I've realized that I can now chant, walk and tweet simultaneously ( I'll never know how to write that word  without the help of a dictionary btw!), though it might seem silly, but I find it much telling, tweeting and sharing information as it happens became a part of what we do. We: The youth segment. which takes me to the next point.

2) In the demonstrations, protests, اعتصامات etc..., I've noticed a new look in the "older people"'s eyes when looking at me, it used to be that those old-school-seasoned-activists/politicians would look at us during such events with eyes full of good-surprise and hope, with a look of cautious relief that there's still hope in "this generation", they'd be leading and we'd be there "with them". Now that look has changed, you could feel that they're stepping aside and leaving it up to us to say what we want, and now they're there "with us". looking down at your phone pressing those buttons is no longer disrespectful! In fact, I've had one woman who came to me while I was doing that while at the Egyptian Embassy, tapped over my shoulder and told me " Inta 3al facebook halla2? / are you on facebook right now?" I smiled and said "No, Twitter!" she said "Ah?! bravo 3alaikom bravo 3alaikom"!.
Even though the shift is nice, it's still not where I want it to be -again this post is all too personal- people still won't take me seriously with my cap on, dammit. I have a dream, and in that dream I'm talking to the king with my cap on!.

3) Every time I saw someone holding Jamal Abdel Nasser's picture and when the crowd chanted for/ about him, I felt grateful to my father for naming me after him. I also felt he -my father- was with me, especially on the night of Mubarak's fall, I think I spoke to him at some point in the middle of it. I remember him asking me about the social/political life in the university, and I remember answering him: nothing happens, no one talks about anything. He'd be happy to have seen how it all went down eventually and who is leading these historical revolutions. RIP dad.

4) I'm no longer seen as the crazy/ too political/ dreamy guy! or that's how I feel anyway. Both online and offline, people are more involved in what's happening, they're sharing views and opinions, they're discussing with me, they're asking me about what I think, people are asking me about twitter, how does it work, what da fuck is a hashtag -of course-. The usual random morning talk at work for instance has been all political, domestic and foreign, everyone is involved, and not everyone is on the same page, which is great, because it means that people are not pretending to be involved, they're not repeating what they've heard to look involved, they're actually analyzing and coming up with their own conclusions. brilliant!.

5) I can't help but feel the tendency from everyone to "talk to the youth", to "listen to the youth", it's as if this "mystical creature of the Youth" has been discovered recently and everybody wants to get to know it out of a sudden! Which is good and scary at the same time, good because it's about time someone pay attention to us and take us seriously, and scary because like all-things-Arab; we function on an impulse, with no clear plan or intention, "today the trend is talking to the youth, let's jump on board". I hope I'm mistaken.

All in all, It's been a fascinating time, the situation in Jordan is still unraveling, the calls for change and reform are getting louder, search twitter for "Reform Jo" and "Hashtagdebates" and join the conversation.

Last but not least, I'm working on writing couple of books to help all sectors of the society understand us better, I'm still looking for a publisher:

للمتخوّفين: تعلّم لغة الشباب في ثلاثة أيام دون معلّم
للآباء وأولياء الأمور: رموز الهاشتاق في فك رسائل العشّاق
للإخوان المسلمين: 140 كارَكتَر والله أكبر
للرفاق العتاولة: البناء التكنولوجي والحصاد الإلكتروني


Feb 5, 2011

الطريق إلى التحرير

يعرض لنا الإعلام المرئي لقطات من ميدان التحرير بشكل متواصل، نفس اللقطة ونفس الزاوية على الأغلب، أمّا الأصدقاء في مصر عبر تويتر فينقلون لنا صور وأخبار وفيديوهات الطريق إلى التحرير، أجد في الأمر مفارقة عادلة، فهؤلاء –الشباب المصري- هم الذين أسّسوا الطريق إلى التحرير، والوضع الطبيعي أن يكونوا هم فقط الناقل والراعي الحصري لبث التطورات من هناك. في الطريق إلى التحرير تمر بالبسطاء، بالمسيّسين، بأفراد الجيش، بالبلطجية، بالأشجار المحروقة، بجروح النازفين، برؤوس مضمّدة مازالت مصرّة على أخذ دورها في "الورديّة" لحماية المداخل، بطفل محمول على الأكتاف يهتف بالجموع كأنّه بدأ ممارسة هذه الهواية في رحم مصرية حرّة. في الطريق إلى التحرير، تقفز عن حواجز الخوف، تلتف بذكاء حول عوائق تسد طريقك، تمشي في ظلام دامس باتجاه الضوء في آخر الطريق، النور المشعّ جبهتك يدلّل عليك؛ فتركض باتجاه الحريّة وتترك خلفك قوى الرجعية تلوّح بسوط السيّد المصاب بعقدة القضيب الصغير تلهث وراءك، ثم تصل هناك... لتبقى.

أبطال التحرير في القاهرة، في تونس، في العالم العربي... الأحرار منهم والشهداء، القابعين خلف القضبان والمفقودين... مليون انحناءة لكم وشكر.