As I want

a film by Samaher Alqadi

As I want

Egypt, Norway, France, country_ps, Germany | 2021 | 88:00 min

Content Categories

Cairo, January 25, 2013. A string of severe sexual assaults takes place in Tahrir Square on the day of the second anniversary of the revolution. In response, a huge crowd of enraged women surges onto the streets. Samaher Alqadi joins them, taking her camera with her as protection but also to document the protests of a burgeoning women’s rebellion. She has no idea where the story will take her. Samaher’s filming coincides with her falling pregnant, and this prompts her to consider her childhood in Palestine and what it means to be a woman and a mother. She begins an imaginary conversation with her own mother, who dies before she can see her one last time. In an intimate inner dialogue that guides us through the narrative, Samaher starts to form the words that are left unsaid and to share her deepest secrets. She goes on a traumatic visit back to her parent’s house in Ramallah where she conjures up and confronts dark memories of the childhood she has managed to escape. Meanwhile, the struggle in Egypt continues and, even after the birth of her son, Samaher still finds herself on the frontline. As I Want is a crucial, hard-hitting political document, an essay film and an inward journey in which individual emancipation is linked to the collective process of liberation in the Arab world. (71 Berlinale ENCOUNTERS)

“As I Want is an important and impressively powerful film about the fight for liberation and emancipation, with harrowing real-life stories helping drive women to show their collective power against ignorance and hostility.”
– Mark Adams, Business Doc Europe, March 1st 21

“A strong cinematic bid against women’s oppression in the Arab world”
– Davide Abbatescianni, Cineuropa

This feature promises to “boldly combine elements of fiction and documentary” and “manoeuvre effortlessly from captivating reality to visual poetry.”
– Cineuropa, Davide Abbatescianni, 15.4.21

“As I Want is not merely a document of these women’s uprising against the Islamist Morsi and all he represents. It’s also a cinematic letter from the director to her mother – a woman she loves dearly who nevertheless raised her to loathe herself. The political and the personal inextricably intertwined.”
– Lauren Wissot, Modern Times Review
Docs Barcelona
Human Rights FF Berlin
Audience Award – 62 Festival dei Popoli Florence
Cast and Crew
  • Director Samaher Alqadi
  • Producer Karim El Hakim (Prophecy Films), Nefise Özkal Lorentzen (Integral Film), Jørgen Lorentzen (Integral Film), Serge Gordey (Temps Noir), Mohanad Yaqubi (Idioms Film), Thomas Kaske (Kaske Film)
  • Director of Photography Samaher Alqadi, Karim El Hakim
  • Editor Gladys Joujou
Original Languages



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