Theeb movie still
Theeb movie poster

Theeb (2014)

Drama, Thriller, Adventure

Director: Naji Abu Nowar
Writers: Naji Abu Nowar, Bassel Ghandour
Starring: Jacir Eid Al-Hwietat, Hussein Salameh Al-Sweilhiyeen, Hassan Mutlag Al-Maraiyeh, Jack Fox

Described as an "Arabic Western," but also regarded as a coming-of-age film, Theeb is set in the Ottoman province of Hejaz (Saudi Arabia, today) during World War I and follows the story of a Bedouin boy struggling to survive on his own in the harsh and unfriendly desert.

The film opens with young Bedouin orphans Theeb ("Wolf") and his older brother Hussein embarking on a perilous journey across the desert to take an English officer and his Arabian guide to a well near an Ottoman train track. But once they arrive at their destination, the young boy is left fending for himself after his group is ambushed by Arab rebels. When an injured mercenary comes across the youngster, the pair find themselves forced to rely on each other to survive in the inhospitable desert amidst the surrounding violence.

With a cast made almost in its entirety of non-actors (only the English officer is played by a real actor), and an extremely impressive performance from the kid in the title role, Theeb gives an insightful, cinematic look at the World War I-era Arabian desert, but is also a memorable coming-of-age story of a child who must grow up fast, in the worst possible circumstances.

Plot summary from IMDb: In the Ottoman province of Hijaz during World War I, a young Bedouin boy experiences a greatly hastened coming-of-age as he embarks on a perilous desert journey to guide a British officer to his secret destination.

Awards: Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 10 wins & 13 nominations.
Runtime: 100 min



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