Just Like Us (2011)
Modern technology and globalization have made the world a much smaller place and caused us to be more interconnected as people, yet cultural misconceptions persist. Through a celebration of culture and comedy, this film uproots the widely held misconception that Arabs have no sense of humor - when in fact they laugh, and are, just like us. This documentary features Egyptian-American comedian Ahmed Ahmed, in his directorial debut, along with a host of critically acclaimed international stand-up comedians. Presented by Cross Cultural Entertainment and Cross Cultural Productions, Just Like Us exemplifies their goal of reintroducing socially relevant issues to the world in an effort to build cultural bridges in this age of greater tolerance, understanding and acceptance. The film documents four countries in the Middle East, showcasing the cultures of Dubai, Lebanon, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and Egypt with sold out crowds totaling over 20,000 people. Contemporary stand-up comedy has the powerful ability to provide relief, encourage a younger generation, break down barriers and serves as a platform for cross cultural dialogue. This art form is very new to the Middle East and older generations did not have the opportunity to appreciate this creative platform. --(c) Official Site … More
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Critic Reviews for Just Like Us
Throughout it all Ahmed is relentlessly upbeat, and he seems to have good reason to be. Yes, he's trying to sell an idea, but it's probably an idea well worth selling.
Though it's only 72 minutes, by the time it's over, you'll be ready for it to end.
Even at 72 minutes, the film runs long, thanks to run-of-the-mill jokes and a shortage of truly revealing moments. Hack routines that wouldn't be amusing in person are even worse up on the big screen.
An ambitious revue film with a two-pronged mission: making Western audiences laugh and exploring why Mideast audiences might not.
It's an interesting travelogue, even if it doesn't quite warrant the documentary's feel-good title.
Of course Arabs aren't a bunch of terrorists - but this movie bombs more often than not.
Good intentions don't equal useful information. Perhaps Ahmed would learn more if he talked to more people who weren't his friends or family.
Important, heartwarming and highly informative documentary about bringing humor to the Arab/Muslim world, which-surprise!-is not at all humorless.
While the point - that humans of all ethnicities and beliefs share the ability to laugh - may seem obvious, this seems like a moment when that's not a bad thing to remember.
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