The Perfect Candidate
Director Haifaa Al-Mansour (‘Wadjda’, ‘Mary Shelley’) returns with this fiery and headstrong drama, Maryam is an ambitious young doctor working in a small town clinic in Saudi Arabia. Despite her qualifications, she has to earn the respect of male colleagues and acceptance from her patients every day. After Maryam is prevented from traveling to Dubai in search of a better job, a bureaucratic mixup leads her to stumble on the application for her local city elections and she decides to run. While she faces the restriction of women’s traditional roles in the Kingdom at every turn, Maryam’s audacious candidacy starts to build momentum and challenges her conservative community. A tight race emerges between Maryam and her male opponent, as Maryam and her family mobilise their determination and creativity to move their traditional society forward.
★★★★ “Al Mansour gives her audience a fine lesson in some key ingredients of political life in Saudi or anywhere else: nepotism, cynicism, sexism and chaos.” - Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian
★★★★ “The Perfect Candidate is fiery and headstrong, and instantly gets you on its side.” - Xan Brooks, The Guardian