Egyptian filmmaker Mohamed Diab (director of the widely acclaimed CAIRO 678, which depicted female harassment in Egyptian society) took four years to develop Clash, which was initially supposed to be about the rise of the 2011 Egyptian revolution, but ended up capturing its fall.
Clash is set in 2013 just after the Egyptian military toppled the Muslim Brotherhood government of Mohamed Morsi. Almost all the action takes place within the claustrophobic confines of a police van, with rival demonstrators trapped inside in stifling heat.
Diab’s film tells a disorientating, frightening story about a country descending into lawless chaos, a ferocious free-for-all that sees revolutionaries pitted against Islamic fundamentalists and both factions confronting the army. It’s a harrowing watch but also a very humane one with Diab seeking to portray the conflict from all possible angles and depicting with immense cinematic verve the violent dismantling of the Arab world’s most populous nation.
“Mohamed Diab’s disturbing and technically daring thriller positions the viewer on the inside of an Egyptian police van in 2013 as post-revolution tensions boil over” **** Benjamin Lee, Guardian