The Dupes (Tewfik Saleh, 1973)

The Criterion Collection, a continuing series of important classic and contemporary films present The Dupes.

criterion logoThe Dupes is a starkly beautiful film tracing the destinies of three Palestinian refugees brought together by dispossession, poverty, and dreams of a better future.  Set in 1950s Iraq, the three men risk their lives within the sweltering confines of a water truck’s steel tank in hopes of smuggling themselves into nearby Kuwait and finding gainful employment.  A masterful adaptation of Ghassan Kanafani’s acclaimed novella Men in the Sun, The Dupes is one of the first films to address the Palestinian predicament.  Egyptian filmmaker Tewfik Saleh blends social realism, documentary representation, New Wave-style subjectivity, and road movie allegory into a Pan-Arabist production that casts a critical eye on the Palestinian diaspora and its causes.

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