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Oct 23rd, 2023
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  1. The Blue Caftan (my letterboxd review)
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  3. absolutely beautiful on all levels. from a technical standpoint, the thoughtful cinematography and gorgeous lighting i expected after watching touzani's adam were present at all times. i especially loved the shots of the caftan, and the delicate way in which the hammam scenes were done. they both conveyed so much in so few words. the sparse background noise, even atmospheric, was pleasant and made what little there was (namely, the man playing music in the street) all the more impactful. additionally, the few scenes that did feature background music had a beautiful string centric score.
  4. plot wise, the film was predictable but instead of diluting my attention, this allowed me to focus on the revelations being made in all the little moments, which were handled with so much care. bakri gave a nuanced and sensitive performance, but lubna azabal truly stole the show. so often in movies about closeted gay men are women either ignored or vilified. the blue caftan does neither, instead portraying the relationship between mina and halim as one of love, understanding and support, but also not without it's own unique strains. ultimately, it is mina's love for halim that encourages him to pursue a relationship with youssef. in return, although halim can never love her in a romantic sense, it's clear that she's the most important person in his life by a mile. he's at his happiest when tending to her and making her laugh, and the notion of a gay man who is not resentful of his wife is refreshing.
  5. all in all, a poignant and moving reflection on death and unconventional love.
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