The Best Egyptian Romcoms From the Early 2000s
These 8 Egyptian romcoms from the early 2000s embody a generation’s romantic fantasies.
While these days the genre seems to have faded away, the romantic comedies - with all its simplicity and inevitable happy endings - had taken over Egyptian cinemas during the early ‘00. With tropes and scenes becoming an integral part of our worldview, these films form a window into the Egyptian ‘romantic ideal’. While not entirely - or even remotely - realistic, we’ve compiled a list of classic guilty pleasure films that remain definitive of modern Egyptian romantic comedies, for Valentine’s movie night purposes. Proceed with tissue boxes...
SANA OULA NASB (2004)
A summer romance featuring then-rising stars Ahmed Ezz, Nour, Khaled Selim and Dalia El Beheiry, ‘Sana Oula Nasb’ followed the story of Ahmed and Khaled as they navigate economic struggles, friendship and love at a beach resort in Hurghada. The film was filmmaker Kamla Abouzekry’s directorial debut and starred the late actor Hassan Hosni.
An ambitious veterinarian played by Ahmed El Sakka travels to South Africa following his uncle’s death. As he attempts to save a park, his late uncle’s legacy,, he falls in love with the country and his uncle’s daughter, played by Mona Zaki.
EL SELEM WEL TE’BAN (2001)
‘El Selem Wel Te’ban’ embodies the ultimate bad boy trope, starring Hani Salama (Hazem) and Hala Shiha (Yasmine). The film follows the story of Hazem, a reckless young divorced man, and his troubled relationship with dance instructor Yasmine. The film is directed by Tarek Al Arian.
ABO ALI (2005)
Starring Karim Abdelaziz and Mona Zaki, the film sees Hassan (played by Abdelaziz) resort to theft to fund his younger brother’s surgery. In an attempt to escape the police, he gets involved with Salma (played by Zaki), who put their differences aside and eventually develop a romantic relationship. The film is directed by Ahmed Nader Galal and also stars Talaat Zakaria.
HARIM KARIM (2005)
This whimsical musical follows the story of a grieving divorcee who reaches out to a group of girlfriends to help him win his ex-wife back. The film stars Moustafa Amar, Yasmin Abdelaziz, Dalia El Behery, Basma, Ola Ghanem, Riham Abdel Ghafour, and late actor Talaat Zakaria and is directed by Ali Idrees.
HOB EL BANAT (2004)
Hob El Banat, produced in 2004, revolves around three half-sisters - Ghada, Roqayya, and Nada - who grew up apart and were forced to come together upon their father's death. Suffering through rage and grief due to complicated relationships with their deceased father, the sisters acclimate to life together, getting to know each other, and finding love along the way. The film stars Laila Elwi, Hanan Turk, Ashraf Abdel Baqi, Khaled Abul Naga, Ahmed Ezz, Hana Shiha, and Ahmed Barrada and was directed by Khaled El Hagar.
SHORT W FANELAH W CAP (2000)
Following three friends living in Sharm El Sheikh, ‘Short W Fanela W Cap’ explores their respective plots and how they end up helping the daughter of a Lebanese ambassador escape her father. The film stars Ahmed El Sakka, Nour, Sherif Mounir, and Ahmed Eid and is directed by Saeed Hamed.
BAHEBAK WANA KAMAN (2003)
'Bahebak Wana Kaman' is a 2003 blockbuster. The story revolves around a young man, Nour Hamdi, who is raised by his aunt and grows up to be a singer. Upon reaching stardom, Hamdi faces competition in the form of young artist, Farida Fathi, and they end up embroiled in a story full of fiery competition and romantic tension. The film is directed by Mohamed El Naggar, and stars Mostafa Amar, Somaya El Khashab, Fathy Abdel Wahab, and Khayriyah Ahmed.
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