Netflix is celebrating emerging Saudi filmmakers.
A new collection called New Saudi Voices will feature 11 short films from Saudi directors that span genres such as horror, fantasy, animation and sci-fi. It will also cover different time periods from the 1960s to the modern day as well as the imagined future. The titles are part of the New Saudi/New Cinema Shorts that were screened at the Red Sea Film International Festival last year.
“We’re very excited to amplify the voices of up-and-coming filmmakers in Saudi Arabia through this collection," said Nuha Eltayeb, director of content acquisitions for Netflix Mena and Turkey. "There's incredible talent in the kingdom, and they have unique stories to tell. We hope that as people tune into the films, they learn more about these creators, and catch a glimpse of their passion, originality and creativity, as we have."
Here’s a look at the 11 films in the Saudi Voices collection.
‘Hallucinated’ by Mohammed Basalamah
Moayd, a deliveryman, has insomnia that continues to get worse until he’s unable to distinguish reality from his hallucinations.
‘Red Circle’ by Abdulaziz Sarhan
A Saudi student living in New York has anxiety because of his poor English language skills.
‘Little Bird’ by Khalid Fahad
A young boy named Malik has numerous challenges in his life but dreams of feeling a sense of freedom.
‘Covida The 19th’ by Omar Al Omirat
The short explores how life has changed during the Covid-19 pandemic.
‘Alrufea’ by Abbas Alshuwayfie
The documentary puts the spotlight on an old neighbourhood and highlights the intimacy of its community.
‘Hide and Seek’ by Mohammad Helal
A young woman returns home and goes about her daily night-time routine, only to realise she’s not alone.
‘Acceptance Land’ by Mansour Assad
A young mother has to navigate her way through a dystopian Saudi Arabia in 2096, where a person’s status is dependent on the colour of their clothing.
‘Whisper Down The Lane’ by Raghad Albarqi
The animated short centres on a set of phone calls between five people that eventually escalates into a bigger conflict.
‘The Day I Lost Myself’ by Rami Alzayer
A young man who has anxiety gets stuck in a lift with an older man, on the way to an interview.
‘The Palm Witch’ by Hala Alhaid
Two friends head off into the old city of Riyadh looking for a lost pet despite the stories of an evil witch who takes children who wander around at night.
‘Al Jakar’ by Abdulaziz Saleh
The short tells the story of an annual boat race that originated in the 1800s and has been held for more than 100 years in Jeddah’s Islamic Seaport. It’s told from the perspective of one of the race’s founder's grandchildren as well as the people of the portside district.