Arts & Artists
Barakat, Henri

(1914 -1997)

Born in
Egypt. Henri Barakat made 112 films during his 55-year career which began in the early 1940s. He was known for “poetic realism” in his works.

Among his films are:

• Angham, 1986
• Arrestation de Fatma, 1984
• Le visiteur, 1972
• L’amour perdu, 1970
• Nuit de noce, 1966
• Safar Barlek, 1966
• Prince de la ruse, 1963
• Fi beytina rajul, (A Man in Our House), 1961
• Nightingale’s Prayer, 1959. Nominated for a Golden Bear, Berlin International Film Festival,1960.
• Hassan et Naima, 1959
• Pitié pour mon amour, 1959
• Days and Nights, 1955
• Lahn al-khouloud, 1952
• Fleurs d’amour, 1951
• Afrita hanem, (The Genie Lady), 1950
• L’amour de ma vie, 1947
• Si j’etais riche, 1942


Fi beytina rajul is based on the novel by Ihsan Abdel Qoddous. The story is set prior to the 1952 revolution and stars Omar Sharif. Sharif plays Ibrahim, a member of the underground resistance who seeks refuge from the so-called "political police" by taking shelter in the home of a civil servant and his family. The film offers a vivid depiction of Egyptian resistance to the British occupation. 1961.

Based on the novel by the Egyptian novelist,
Taha Hussein, Nightingale’s Prayer stars Faten Hamama, the first lady of the Arab silver screen. The story, set in the countryside of Upper Egypt, follows Amna (Faten Hamama) as she plots her revenge on the man (Ahmed Mazhar) who destroyed her family's honor. It is a tale of a courageous young woman's rebellion against tradition and poverty. 1959.

Afrita hanem blends comedy, fantasy and musical genres, Asfour (Farid al- Atrache), is a poor singer/actor who stumbles upon a magic lamp and its wish-granting genie played by Samia Gamal. When he uses his new-found power to woo his girlfriend away from her rich suitor, Asfour discovers that his genie has a few wishes of her own. 1950.