But like most of Peter Mimi’s works, he came with a lot of controversy, and opinions were divided on the communication sites about the illegal and undeclared “quote” of a famous American movie.
Accusations of stealing the song or the movie?
After the spread of the song “Ghazala Raika” from the movie “For Zico” and it reached 43 million views in less than two weeks, many accusations emerged that it was stolen from a popular Russian song, and the composer came out denying the matter and said that it was nothing more than a similarity and not even influenced or To quote, but if it’s hard to tell if the song was stolen, there’s no room for confusion about the plot that’s nearly identical to Little Miss Sunshine.
The events revolve around the child Zakaria, the son of the poor family, whose father works as a car driver to transport the dead, and the mother cooks food to sell to middle and upper-class women. The family lives in a packed house full of drama with a married grandfather with Alzheimer’s and an uncle who is a drug addict, and hope comes when they receive a letter that Zico has been chosen. He is one of the smartest 3 boys in Egypt, and he has to go to a competition in Siwa Oasis, and winning it will support his academic future and definitely give him better chances in life than his parents provide him.
The family begins a journey by car from Cairo to Siwa, full of difficulties, starting with their inability to provide the necessary money, to make the film in the end a work that belongs to road movies, a genre that most of its events take place on the road, in which the lives of the heroes and their destinies change in an internal and external expedition to their lives during their crossing From one place to another.
These events seem to be clearly identical to the 2006 movie “Little Miss Sunshine” directed by the couple Valerie Ferris and Jonathan Dayton, which deals with the story of young Olive, who lives with her parents who suffer from a severe financial crisis and on the verge of bankruptcy, with an old lover of women and an addict, and a recovering uncle From an attempted suicide, the girl gets her golden opportunity when she enters a talent competition final in California, and the financially struggling family must travel together on a long trip across the United States to deliver the girl in time.
This similarity angered a large group of cinema audiences because “Little Miss Sunshine” is one of the most popular films in the Arab world, as it has been shown on TV channels continuously since its early years, and it has a wide fan base, so it is illogical for the director to quote it without taking into account That the audience would notice this strange match?
Where is Zico from his movie?
This confusion drew attention to the real evaluation of the work as a new Egyptian movie that was released simultaneously and in competition with director Sherif Arafas movie “The Crime”, starring Ahmed Ezz and Menna Shalaby as well.
Mimi bet again in “For Zico” on Karim Mahmoud Abdel Aziz, the hero of the movie “Musa”, production of 2021, which he presented this year in a completely different role. Here is the pressured father who loves his family who is trying to preserve it, but the director adds a touch of lightness The shadow over every situation he is exposed to, even the most tragic, in a charisma close to that of his late father Mahmoud Abdel Aziz, and in an excellent artistic development that makes this role the best in Karim’s career.
Menna Shalaby was given the full opportunity to show her acting talents in the role of an uneducated mother who lives under constant worry about the treachery of the days or the husband, and the competition comes as a dream that you need to live even if it is false. The film is light at times, but its performance in general is good.
Egyptian films, in which children play the title role, are very well received by audiences who receive them excellently, and may launch the careers of young actors after that or even fade away. But the viewer still remembers the film with the name of his young hero. Recently, we saw this in the series “Les La 2”, for example, and the child Salim Mustafa, but this is due to two things: the written role of the child, and the charisma of the latter.
We see the opposite in “For Zico.” The least role that was taken care of is Zakaria, whose role was presented by the child Youssef Salah, despite being a driver of events, and it is assumed that he is the eye that watches his family’s crises and changes during the trip, but he is a very flat character, he did not single out even a sufficient part for her. From the dialogue, and the song he sings at the end is not even with his voice, but rather the child Muhammad Osama, so that the role appears dull and easy to forget, even though Zicos name is on the film’s cover.
In the end, there will be nothing left of “For Zico” after a few months but a memory of a movie that was completely adapted from a famous foreign work, without any focus on the value of the work itself, which, perhaps, if it were legally Egyptianized, the lights would be thrown on it in a different way.