Reel Bad Arabs
Aladdin, Cannonball Run, Delta Force, Rules of Engagement, Father of the Bride Part II, Gladiator...Reel Bad Arabs is author Jack Shaheen's devastating exploration of American cinema - from the earliest days of silent film to today's biggest Hollywood blockbusters - that reveals an astonishing pattern of slanderous Arab stereotyping.
Based on Shaheen's book Reel Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People, the documentary isolates and examines America's most persistent Arab caricatures, from oversexed Bedouin bandits and submissive maidens to sinister sheikhs and blood-thirsty terrorists.
Shaheen presents striking insights into the origin of these images, their disturbing similarities to anti-Semitic and other racist and ethnocentrist stereotypes, and their resurgence and political resonance during key moments of crisis in US history.
Reflecting on the social and political consequences of Hollywood's long love affair with Arab villainy and buffoonery, Shaheen also celebrates films that reflect the complexity and humanity of Arab people, and the reality and richness of Arab history and culture.