Amjad Abu Alala

Film Director & Producer

Voted for

12 Angry Men1956Sidney Lumet
Persona1966Ingmar Bergman
Mirror1975Andrei Tarkovsky
BAB AL-HADID1958Youssef Chahine
MIA EONIOTITA KE MIA MERA1998Theo Angelopoulos
Akira Kurosawa's Dreams1990Akira Kurosawa
Taste of Cherry1997Abbas Kiarostami
DANCER IN THE DARK2000Lars von Trier
KRÓTKI FILM O ZABIJANIU1987Krzysztof Kieslowski
A Torinói Ió2011Béla Tarr


12 Angry Men

1956 USA

The dialogue in this film will make your hours pass with joy and will challenge your ethics and judgment! Also I believe this film started a wave of a cinema, so that we still refer to this one location and piece of art!


1966 Sweden

Persona for me is why cinema got created in the first place; telling a story of two women in Bergman’s way is something I still try to figure out and study, like a seductive secret that we are looking for. ut we just don’t really needs to know, so it can stays as magical as it is!


1975 USSR

Tarkovsky’s cinema just made me dream and fly with it, he is my biggest inspiration ever! All his films, so i really suffer choosing from Mirror, when i still can't imagine not having Stalker or Sacrifice on this list!


1958 Egypt

One of the best Arab films by a great Egyptian director, Chahine’s cinema was my first inspiration ever! And with this film, I didn’t realize how much i admire it till it found a way to be inside my first feature film!


1998 Greece, France, Italy, Germany

Like a magical poem, this film could make you fly in your emotions and be in the magical realist world of Theo! And the music track on it is insane, by the great composer Eleni Karaindrou.

Akira Kurosawa's Dreams

1990 USA

When an old director collects most of his unrealised ideas in his last days to make into one film, this just makes me amazed! It’s like a journey into the soul and sleepless mind of one of the greatest filmmakers who ever lived!

Taste of Cherry

1997 Iran

In my teenage hood this film was an eye-opener for how to make cinema in those countries that fight against cinema and Art! And 15 years from its release i was blessed by being a student of Kiarostami and making a film under his supervision!


2000 Denmark, France, Sweden, Italy, Germany

I never understand how Lars Von trier can make these films of his, like Dogme or the rest of his work! I admire the games that he likes to play with us and his capacity to enjoy himself!

This one will be forever an inspiration for something I want to do but I'm not ready for yet, a dark artistic musical!


1987 Poland

Bold, harsh, and poetic, who can mix these words other than Kieslowski! I knew that this director would be in my choices here but I was so torn between all his great films that I adore! Blue and The Double Life of Veronique! But in this film he tried something different and went out of his safe zone, to find the romance inside death, to find the child inside a killer, and to tell a story about a human that we don’t know!

A Torinói Ió

2011 Hungary, France, Switzerland, Germany

After watching this film for the first time i couldn’t breathe, literally! Yes it’s a film that can take the air out of your body, it can make you stop watching films for a month as happened to me. I had to use some light Marvel films to heal first then I became addicted to Béla Tarr’s harsh and disturbing cinema!

Further remarks

Choosing these films was a nice and painful mission! When you admire a variety of cinema from different filmmakers and different cinema perspectives, the concept of choosing the best ten will always be a torture!

So I decided to state here the rest of the films that I was about to choose and hopefully they will find their way to the final list!

Amour by Michael Haneke, A Separation by Asghar Farhadi, The Mummy 1969 by Chadi Abdel Salam, The Dreamers by Bernardo Bertolucci, Only Lovers Left Alive by Jim Jarmusch, Tree of Life by Terrence Malick, Blue and Double Life of Veronique by Kieslowski, The Great Beauty by Paolo Sorrentino, In the Mood for Love by Wong Kar-Wai and A Clockwork Orange by Stanley Kubrick.