A discussion of Le sixième jour, which Chahine dedicates to Gene Kelly as a thank you for having filled his youth with joy. A rare Chahine film that is centred on a female star, female desire and female self-actualisation in a patriarchal culture. A hybrid of a woman’s film and musical. It’s set during a cholera pandemic, which resonates with the present, and also features a story of the unrequited love of a 26 year old street performer for an unhappy and much older housewife, one that still feels transgressive. Richard loved it very much. I less so. But we agree that it remains essential viewing for fans of Dalida and Youssef Chahine.
Those of you who don’t know of Dalida, the star, might be interested in this BBC radio documentary: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p04tmx5c?fbclid=IwAR2L6lzcVgBUR75eh8i6PE7UuhZy-VPZRK9K0BIoCfB4HVFF809WGGWnWlE
Those of you who speak French, might be interested in this fascinating interview with Dalida for Radio France. Celebrated film critic Serge Daney is the interviewer: https://www.franceculture.fr/emissions/les-nuits-de-france-culture/dalida-la-psychanalyse-ma-beaucoup-aidee-a-comprendre-le-personnage-de-saddika-dans-le-sixieme-jour-0?fbclid=IwAR33tJBDh9ViQuU2Szmf5kkf7M1_ME1VulrWHZwxrCqte-oVDK5iNfQ3vCg
I made this little trailer:
The passage from Ibrahim Fawal’s book, Youssef Chahine, discussed in the podcast:
Chahine, Dalida, visual compositions:
Mohse Mohieddin and the monkey, a rhyme with the end of Return of the Prodigal Son: