However when a sister has the same outlook it baffles me. I once read on a sister's blog how she felt all the other sisters around her were one-dimensional, only interested in child-rearing, their husbands, and home, as if that somehow made them less. *UNNECESSARY DISCLAIMER*: This is absolutely fine but even the sisters who devote and dedicate their time and energies to their families have hobbies, interests, and likes outside of that arena.
I chose to be a traditional Muslim wife and mother but I know my worth isn't merely defined by how well I can make couscous or how clean my bathrooms are. (ALHAMDULILLAH! lol) I am respected and loved by my husband for all of my good qualities and accepted with my faults alhamdulillah. I am responsible in front of Allah swt for fulfilling my religious obligations and I am encouraged to pursue my own halal passtimes and seek knowledge (ilm).
On a side note, ilm is defined as knowledge of one's deen not merely scholastic knowledge with no practical benefit. Just like to clear that up as so many people like to quote a particular hadith but without the true meaning of it. :-)
Sorry back to the regularly scheduled program. I started this post (as the title shows) to discuss one of my newer interesst which is foreign cinema. I just got sidetracked on a tiny little rant, sorry. lol Anyway at night, when all the family is asleep, is mama time. The house is quiet and I can concentrate. I sometimes read or catch up with the bills online, etc. Really just whatever I feel like doing.
I recently had some spare time and decided I wanted to watch a movie via Netflix. I like alot of different types of movies but of course so many of them now are full of sex and innuendo so its harder for me to find something I can feel good about watching. Which lead me to check out the foreign films.
I might be a little addicted. :-) I've always loved to learn about other cultures (um hello, I'm a convert to Islam which is a pathway to learning about alot of different cultures!). So here is my list of recently watched films:
1. Tuya's marriage: I really loved this one. Filmed in 2006, it is set in inner Mongolia and tells the story of strong-willed Tuya whose husband was disabled. She is trying to run their sheep ranch and care for 2 children, their home, and her husband. Eventually her husband insists she divorce him to remarry because she cannot continue doing it alone. Her stipulation: her new husband must accept her children and ex-husband as well. This is a very moving film and I would recommend it wholeheartedly.
2. Arranged: Um so technically this IS a foreign film (it said something about CanadaFilm) but it was shot in New York. However it is an indie film and focuses on the unlikely friendship between an orthodox Jewish woman and a Muslim sister. Both are in "arranged" marriages and it gives a pretty balanced look. It alternately pokes gentle fun at these institutions while also showing their strengths. I really enjoyed this one as well.
3. Bliss: This one really deserves it's own post. It's about a young Turkish girl who is raped. She cannot remember the attack and therefore is outcast by her family who believes it is her sin. The patriarch of the family (her uncle) decides the girl must be killed to preserve the families honor and sends his son to do the job. He takes her to Istanbul but despite many opportunities to finish the job finds he cannot. They eventually fall in love but it isn't a love story and the main characters aren't always likeable. Although Cemal (the cousin) does the right thing, he has a bad temper, is very jealous and alternately goes from believing Meryem to reviling her as a whore if she even speaks with another person. I find this makes the film much more believable because rarely are people all evil or good. I highly recommend.
4. Jodhaa Akbar: This is everything you would expect from a high-budget, Bollywood blockbuster extravaganza. I really enjoyed it. :-) Actually there weren't many of the (to me) cheesy dance scenes and the one love scene was fairly tasteful and not very explicit. Anyway this is based on a true story of a Mughal (Muslim) emperor in India who tried to unite all of Hindustan. He marries a young Hindu girl who is very devoted to her religion and her personal god, Krishna. My only complaint is that Islam isn't always portrayed in a correct manner but it often isn't PRACTICED in a correct manner. It does show alot of good about Islam as well so I think it's pretty balanced. It does of course make the Hindu leading lady out to be a saint but I can forgive that. It's a sweet, moving love story but it is LOOOOOONG. Took me two nights to finish it. Anyway I enjoyed it but not because it's an intellectually stimulating movie. It was just a fun film for me. :-)
Alrighty that about does it. I tried to watch 2 others; one was shot in Sri Lanka but the camera work was soooooo crazy I actually got motion sickness lol. I also started to watch Kadosh, an Israeli film about 2 ultra-orthodox jews who weren't able to have children but the husband loved his wife and didn't want to divorce her as his father commanded. It was a little slow but I felt the love scene was starting to be too graphic and opted to not watch it. I might try it again some night but will fast forward through that part.:-)
Let me know if you guys like to watch foreign films and what do you like about them. :-) Ma salaama!