Production info

Egypt/France, 1994

Ahmed Bedir, Safia El Emari, Khaled El Nabaoui, Michel Piccoli
Directed by Youssef Chahine (يوسف شاهين)


Egyptian arabic version of the epic biblical tale of Joseph, son of Jacob. Ram, the Joseph character, is a dreamer and proto-intellectual, bullied by his elder brothers. He dreams of leaving his family's nomadic life to study agriculture in Egypt, the hub of civilization. Though sold into slavery by his brothers, Ram overcomes tough odds and manages to win the approval and help of Amihar, the Theban military chief. Soon he finds himself a pawn in the political and sexual games between Amihar and his wife Simihit, a high priestess of the Cult of Amun.

Filled with beautiful location shots of Egyptian ruins and lush re-enactments of decadent cult rituals, The film is banned in Egypt because some believe it blasphemes Islam by portraying Joseph, whom Muslims consider a prophet, in human terms. French title: "L'Émigré". English title: "The Emigrant".

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