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Dream Away (Al Holm Al Ba'eed)

Qumra Projects

Marouan Omara, Johanna Domke / Feature Documentary / Egypt, Germany, Qatar / 2017 / 85 min / Colour / DCP
In Arabic, English / English subtitles
Interests: Politics, Social Issues, Youth, Immigration, Identity, Creative Documentary, Women Issues
Rated: Mature subject matter. Not suitable for minors. Individuals under the age of 18 are not admitted into cinemas.

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Representing freedom and easy cash, Sharm El Sheikh has long been a dream destination for Egyptian youth. Recently, terror attacks have brought tourism in the resort town to a halt. ‘Dream Away’ follows a group of young employees of a luxury hotel compound, where clichés and stereotypes of Western and Oriental cultures clash. This carousel-like experience elevates the youths into a dreamlike state; in the shadow of the shimmering hotel facades, they lead double lives, their families unaware of the sinful temptations of the town. Still, they are torn in the face of the prevailing Western culture: for some the liberal values represent long-dreamt-of independence, while for others it is simply not enjoyable. While leaving is not an option – it is too difficult to jettison their liberal lifestyle and return to their traditional culture – they now lack both financial and personal opportunities, and find themselves on an existential quest for identity.

About the Director

Marouan Omara is a documentary filmmaker from Egypt. He studied Applied Arts at Helwan University, and filmmaking at the Academy of Cinema, Arts and Technology in Egypt. His works seek to express a dreamlike notion by exploring the overlap of fiction and reality. He currently teaches film and video at the German University in Cairo and is an adjunct professor in film production at the American University in Cairo.


Marouan Omara, Johanna Domke
Roman Roitman, Mark Lotfy
The directors do not yet have formal agreements with the film’s main characters; one of the goals of the development phase is to determine who exactly the characters are. That being said, the directors have developed close relations with a number of peopl


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