Unlike Room ( see below), which also focuses on a young boy at the centre of the story, this film is far more powerful and interesting. It is set in 1916 in Hijaz province (Western Saudi Arabia today) of the Ottoman empire. It is during the First World War at the time of Lawrence of Arabia and tells the story of a young boy named Theeb or Wolf in Arabic and his older brother. They are asked to guide a English soldier to a well on the way to Mecca. They are moving through a war torn area and are victims of a conflict they have nothing to do with. The cinematography in this film is beautiful and reminiscent of David Lean’s masterpiece. The boy is a great actor and not nauseatingly cute as in Room but very real. Unlike Room I was entranced for the full hour and a half. This movie has a high rating from reviewers but like many foreign language films has had very little exposure. The knock on this movie is that it is a simple coming of age adventure film with a predictable outcome. I am not sure this is entirely fair. The world in which it is set and the time is a violent one and this movie avoids any gruesome violence or unjustified confrontations or death.It’s a good adventure story and I would highly recommend it to you. it will be at review cinemas and the Lightbox so get out and see it.
I really did not like this movie despite its 96 percent rating on RottenTomatoes. It is boring, unbelievable and pointless. It is winning because the kid is so damn cute but if not for that I think this film would disappear into oblivion which I suspect it will after February 28th passes. I am clearly way off the popular consensus. This starts with a woman who is a prisoner in a room with her young son. They have access to food and basic comforts but she is visited by her captor and is clearly a sexual slave to him. She has been there for seven years and the son is only 4 or 5 and is clearly the son of her and her captor. The focus of the film is that her son has no concept of the outside world except through the small television they have. The whole scenario seemed unbelievable to me. They behave as would any mother and son in a normal situation which I could not believe. The boy has concepts that he would never have if brought up in this situation. I don’t know if this is based on a real case or not or on research about people in similar circumstances but I just couldn’t believe the scenario at all. They escape in yet another unbelievable plot involving the son feigning death. Once they get out the story shifts to introducing the boy to the world he has never known. It is totally wrapped around the relationship between mother and son but it is just pointless unless you identify with the cute little boy. Sorry but this movie really is not very interesting at all. Just my opinion however. Enjoy… if you like that kind of thing.