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Girl and her bike make history in Saudi Arabia in 'Wadjda' ★★ ★
Bicycles can mean everything in the movies: a livelihood threatened (Vittorio De Sica's "Bicycle Thieves"), a speedy source of open-air comedy (Jacques Tati's "Jour de Fete"), a means of escape (the recent Dardenne brothers' heartbreaker "The Kid With a Bike"). In "Wadjda," the first narrative feature from Saudi Arabia's first female filmmaker, the thought of a shiny new bike — something culturally discouraged for use by girls or women in the restrictive Saudi kingdom — energizes every thought in the head of the 10-year-old title character, whose purple-laced Chuck Taylor high-tops are enough to mark her as a rebel.
September 19, 2013