Ali Saeed’s documentary film “Against the Cinema,” from which parts were presented during the conference, describes the story of Saudi cinema and the condition of rejection and resistance to which it has been subjected in the kingdom since the 1980s.
It depicts how Saudi citizens used to travel to Bahrain to see a movie before the theatre reopened years ago and a slew of showrooms developed in tandem with a surge in production and training.
The director of “Against the Cinema” stated that he is from a generation that has witnessed the film industry’s decline in Saudi Arabia over the last 20 years and that he decided to make the film after reading many cinema-related books and discovering that there was nothing about cinema in his country.
He decided to make a film on this period, beginning with the loss of cinema following the Juhayman tragedy in November 1979 and ending in 2018 with the opening of showrooms, increased production, and the industry’s comeback.
According to Saeed, the film “deals with the thrilling story of Saudi cinema that society has gone through for many years, and recounts the state of contradiction with cinema,” as reported by Al-Shorouk.
All of this is so that future generations will be aware that there are elements of society who do not want cinema in Saudi Arabia, and how filmmakers and fans responded with insistence and resistance until the will of life triumphed and the showrooms reopened in 2018