May Ezzedine Shines in Ramadan 2013

shak

Saidia – For the past few years, the Egyptian actress/singer has been panned for participating in one of the worst movies of all times by critics and 4 of her movies were listed in Al Arabiya’s black list.

However, luck maybe changing for the Arab world’s Lindsay Lohan as the actress showed unprecedented acting performances and reincarnation of a character so evil, so malicious and viper-like mentality. Watching her 2013 Ramadan series “Al Shak” was more than amazing, it was more than entertainment it was,, it was believing that the person playing that role isn’t May. she perfected the character of money-loaded Wassila so perfectly that its nearly impossible to recognize sweet little May Ezzedine.

We guess now that her name being on the black list isn’t an issue for the young actress, because now she should always be proud to have starred in “Al Shak”, the most watched and liked (at least on Facebook) during Ramadan of 2013.

Advertisements

Yousra’s Ramadan Series: Underrated?

Saidia – I was impressed along with the rest of my family with Yousra’s series during Ramadan 2012 “Sharbat Louz” and I considered it as one of, if not the, best series of last year’s Ramadan.

When promos featuring Yousra’s  series of this year, I was so happy to see that it looked very, very promising and I couldn’t wait to watch it! However, I guess TV Channels didn’t agree with me because the major TV Stations in Egypt (CBC, Hayat, Mehwar and maybe even Nile Drama) didn’t add the series to their programming. Moreover, I found no trace of the series on TV and that maybe due to the fact that maybe a particular channel bought the rights to show the series (BIG MISTAKE). Why big mistake? if the channel isn’t one of the most prominent TV Station in the Arab World or at least Egypt, the series will be ignored especially that this year’s Ramadan has one of the best programs I’ve seen in years.

What I can say to Yousra is that I’ll be watching your show on the internet and that you remain one of my favorite actresses in the world.

The 7th Day of Ramadan: People Finally Coping

ramadann

Saidia – Today is the 7th day of Ramadan here in Morocco and people are back to their pre-first-day-Ramadan energetic although fasting. 

Unlike what many westerns think, Ramadan of 2013 isn’t Ramadan of 665 because people always find a way to cope with the very special Ramadan routine and soon get back to being energetic and seemingly not fasting. The reasons vary from house to house, family to family and person to person. Most young people spend the day sleeping and wake up only 4 to 3 hours short from the Maghrib (time to break the fasting), while other young people who need to work, cope with each passing day as job-related issues takes their thinking away from food. For older people, most of them work and therefor, must cope with daily Ramadan activities. Normally by the 7th day, a Muslim gets used to the Ramadan routine and at times, favorites it from the ordinary routine and starts fasting Mondays and Thursdays (Preferred yet not Forced by Islam).

Ramadan’s first couple of days always bring much confusion for family members, especially women who find themselves wondering about what to cook next.

Hekayate Hayat (مسلسل حكاية حياة ): Keeping Viewers On Their Toes

Saidia – Ghada Abdel Razek may have rose some eyebrows with her political and pro-Mubarak statements back in 2011/2012, however no one can deny that Ghada is one of Egypt’s most talented actresses, and her latest Ramadan series is just amazing.

So this series talks about a woman called  Hayat (Ghada) locked up in a “crazy people” hospital while her family enjoys living the life or the rich and powerful as part of Egypt’s elite community. It turns out that Hayat was accused of killing her mother and instead of going to prison, her father used his influence so that his daughter gets to be locked in a “crazy people” hospital, a lavish hospital I might add.

A Doctor following the case of Hayat soon finds out the horrors Hayat went through and go through inside the hospital as some workers in the hospital abuse her and mistreat her. The good doctor gets so close to Hayat that the latter starts telling him about what really happened and how she was framed for killing her mother, getting her husband taken from her by her own sister and subsequently losing her money to her sister and little brother after the death of her father. Hayat tells the doctor how her mother used to sleep with other men and that when she decided to face her things got heated and her mother fell from the porch — >Dying.

Following yet another abuse by hospital workers, the doctor helps Hayat to break free and then convincing the hospital “dirty” officials to state that Hayat has been cured and subsequently getting a government committee to agree that Hayat may leave her “prison”. Seeing that 13 years have passed since she was first locked, her criminal case was dropped (Egyptian law states that after 10 years any case or rulling are dropped). Now, Hayat is living one block away from her Son, who she last saw when he was a little kid but she is yet to get her money, she is yet to start her war with her family and she is yet far away from fighting back especially that she keeps telling the doctor (who is married and seems to be falling in love with her) that she wants to be left in piece, she doesn’t want any money and only wants her son.

Wow, what a series right? From Al Araf, to Al Shak and the Preacher what could you possibly choose with another cool series: Hekayat Hayat….Egypt is truly the Hollywood of Arabs.

Al Shak Series: One of Ramadan’s Best

Saidia – Al Shak (مسلسل الشك) is becoming with each passing day a crowd pleaser, proving to be a straight hit and one hell of a comeback for Syrian actress Raghda.

The series talks about a typical middle class Egyptian family dealing with daily-life issues yet staying strong and facing each problem as one body, however this body soon catches a cancer that divides them and weakens them and turns each one of them against the other one. When lawyer comes knocking their door telling the family that a man left over $70 Million to the family’s matriarch “Samya” and her daughter “Wassila”. Everyone was surprised to know that the man left the money to his supposed ex-lover and daughter. Doubt soon spread in the house driving the Father to conduct a DNA test to prove if he is the father or not and surprisingly enough, he finds out that Wassila isn’t his biological daughter sending him into a rage and subsequently evicting his wife from the house. His wife stands harshly behind her innocence while her daughter seems to enter into an atmosphere of shock driving her to accept the money and is shown blowing her recently acquired cash on designer handbags, shoes, clothes and such.

According to the promos, Wassila will turn against everyone (her husband included) making this series one of Ramadan’s most thrilling by a long shot.

Trending on Twitter: #MoroccoNeedsOneDirection

one-direction-1a (1)

Saidia – And so Moroccans are getting addicted to twitter with each passing day. Now, Moroccans are joining the trending trend and the ost recent attempt is #MoroccoNeedsOneDirection!

Millions of Moroccans (or at least tens of thousands) of twitter users are coming together to send a message (although based on twitter) to the A-list One Direction boy-band.. Why exactly, we don’t know but as one twitter using Moroccan puts it: Morocco wants One Direction to notice them!

Good luck..

Adel Emam’s “Al Araf” first two episodes are “distasteful”

adel

Saidia – We’ve been holding our breaths, waiting to watch Adel Emam’s “Al Araf” or “The Godfather”, lingering to find out what the “Leader” has in-store for us during Ramadan 2013.

Unfortunately, We were, to say the least, surprised by how “distasteful” the first episode. Nothing happened in the series first episode besides a continues comparison between the rich and poor along with “distasteful” music, at a time classic and other time, popular music. What struck us the most as shocking is the fact that Adel Emam didn’t appear in the first episode, not even in one scene. The second episode was largely better, Emam finally appeared and man his acting is as amazing, as funny and as clever as always! The only problem concerning the 2nd episode is that NOTHING HAPPENED! the episode evolved around Emam appearing as a Major General in the police (specializing in the public funds) and conducting face-to-face meetings with businessmen, accusing them of unethical and illegal actions and then sentencing them to prison after presenting them with minted lemon juice….great for a scene but illogical for an entire episode. It should be noted that Emam is being paid $4 Million for Al’Araf.

We don’t want to get into details, but the first two episodes were a disaster for a mega star such as Adel Emam. However, we are still hoping and will continue watching.

The Preacher: One of the best series of Ramadan 2013

Saidia – The Preacher (مسلسل الداعية) has come out as one of the potential best series of Ramadan 2013.

The reason behind such statement is the relevance between the current political atmosphere in Egypt and how the series cleverly denounces the rule of the Muslim Brotherhood and how they “stole” the revolution, though being a family-drama series focusing slightly on politics, slightly on religion and generally on social and family issues.

At least for now, the first two episodes of The Preacher seem exciting, ravishing and can’t wait to see what happens next!

Ramadan: The Month Of Delicious, Tasty Food

Saidia – Back i the day, Ramadan’s arrival was largely attached to embracing god and the religion along with experiencing the feelings of poorer people who are unable, throughout the year, to find something to eat whenever they want.

foodramadan

However, people alienated Ramadan from its religious and holy form and into a month of tasty delicious food made exquisitely for visiting family and loved-ones. I won’t lie, I personally enjoy Ramadan, hankering for its arrival along with its blessings, religious atmosphere, and I won’t lie….The food and series are AMAZING! Yes it has become the month of series and delicious food, the same way the new year celebration, Christmas and thanksgiving diverted from their original forms. However, on a little bit optimistic stance, Muslims (myself included) are still attached, at least for now, to the larger and clearer parts of their religion, and although we can’t change what we have become, we sure can’t forget who we are, we can’t forget our Islamic origins and roots.

I love Ramadan, I love its smells, I love its theme, I love its routine, I love its food, I love its family gatherings but more importantly, I love its spirituality and holiness.

Ramadan Is Here: From Fez …. With Love

Image

Saidia – Walking in the warm alleyways of the ancient city of Fez, my hands feeling the old walls of the ancient city and my eyes watching that old Jewish man in his store congratulating his Muslim neighbors for the arrival of Ramadan and if only he wasn’t wearing his trademark Jewish hat, no one will able to see any difference between him and his Muslim neighbor.

article-0-0DC69F4B00000578-867_634x499

Ramadan in Morocco has a different taste, a different flavor in each city, village and douare (Small village). It might be due to the fact that Morocco is such a diverse country but today I’ll focus on the imperial city of Fez with its old riads, houses, smells, people and mosques. Entering from one of its grandiose gates, one might feel humble, at awe and obviously proud to be in a country with one of the oldest and most ancient civilizations in the world. Hearing a mom shouting at her son not to forget picking the best bread from the bakery at the end of the alley…all of this is happening, you see the granddad walking out of the mosque with his white Djellaba, red Taboush and aged yellowish Belgha (traditional Moroccan sandals). Continue walking in the old city gets more and more interesting as smells of food coming from houses with open doors taking a person in a journey from the present day to a time when security was not a concern and the neighbors were a one big happy family.

All of this beauty might be overshadowed by the negligence the old city of fez is suffering from, especially that the mayor of the city is busy securing himself a better position in the governing body of Morocco and soon, negligence will reach even the center of the old city that is if….modernity didn’t hit first….but Fez will survive as long it continues conceiving loyal citizens defying the impossible. My small story is finished and the only thing left for me to say is: From Fez….with love.