Wadjda Reviews

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March 21, 2014
The overall pro-freedom message comes through loud and clear. Rhetorically speaking, the trick of using childish innocence to reveal adult hypocrisy is virtually foolproof.
March 21, 2014
It's a provocative but credible premise and in exploring it, Al Mansour has come up with an engagingly subversive character. Wadjda is a delight.
December 10, 2013
Al Mansour's first feature film is a striking achievement.
December 10, 2013
In the title role Mohammed makes a sweet scamp, wry and watchful, always chancing her arm even as she senses trouble ahead -- which is, in a nutshell, what most Saudi women can expect of life.
December 10, 2013
The most radical and cheering message of Wadjda is that a change isn't just possible, but inevitable.
October 17, 2013
"Wadjda" earns extra points just for being what it is. Who knew that, in a country that famously frowns on women driving cars, some are even allowed to make movies?
October 17, 2013
This delightful debut feature by a Saudi woman named Haifaa Al-Mansour uses a bicycle as a metaphor for freedom within a social circumference.
October 11, 2013
A sweet little film about the human spirit, about want and energy and determination against unfair odds.
October 4, 2013
In Saudi filmmaker Haifaa al-Mansour's winsome wonder Wadjda, a young girl's aspirations provide an intimate glimpse into the possibilities and limitations of a cloaked culture.
October 3, 2013
More than a critique of Saudi society, "Wadjda" offers a character with universal resonance and appeal.
October 3, 2013
Al-Mansour seems out to make a movie that works in America. Which is likely a savvy move, since it seems unlikely she's going to get much traction back home.
October 3, 2013
The film is deserving of its position as a pioneer. It's a heartfelt, touching peek into the day-to-day life of a culture Westerners rarely get to see.
October 3, 2013
Wadjda is a movie about freedom - and nothing represents freedom with the metaphoric simplicity and symmetry of a bicycle.
October 3, 2013
"Wadjda" is a terrific film.
October 3, 2013
Wadjda captures Saudi life on the cusp of serious change, but it's by no means a solemn drama. Al-Mansour writes and directs with a light touch and hopeful aspect.
September 20, 2013
There's a lot more going on in this first feature film from Saudi Arabia, where movie theaters are banned, than the deceptively simple story of a girl who's willing to do just about anything to buy her first bicycle.
September 19, 2013
A simple story told with economy, "Wadjda" is a notable example of old-school, humanistic filmmaking.
September 19, 2013
"Wadjda" works quietly and well in its story of a young protagonist questioning the restrictive status quo.
September 19, 2013
Though writer-director Haifaa Al-Mansour doesn't break new ground aesthetically, she relates the experience of a Saudi Arabian girl's coming of age clearly and unsentimentally, which alone makes this a must-see.
September 16, 2013
What keeps Wadjda from devolving into a sort of heavy-handed cultural show-and-tell is its title character.
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