Cruella is Stealing Hearts in Egyptian Cinemas, and a Flashback to our Favorite Arab She-Villains

Cruella was my favorite she-villain since I was a clueless flamboyant kid. My mother used to read 101 Dalmatians for me, and I remember falling in love with Cruella. I thought she was fabulous, ambitious, and strong. 

When Cruella’s trailer came out a few months ago, and I saw Emma Stone with Emma Thompson in a crazy fashion battle with the visuals of a past era, I was stunned. 

Now let’s go to the critics!

Cruella and the unexpected plot twists, and yet, nothing else would have made sense

The plot is crazy. It keeps promising you something, and delivers something entirely different with unexpected twists and turns, leaving you asking yourself one question: how did I not expect this? As it unfolds though, you realize that nothing else would have made sense. 

Cruella’s scandalous runway of fashion wonders

This was hands down our favorite part of the movie. The spectacular fashion reveals, from the burning cape to the paper dress, and much, much more. As I wanted to watch the movie for these specific glamour reveals, I was not disappointed with the fashion galore!

Cruella came out rather childish, more than we expected

I knew the movie was targeting a variety of audiences, and it involved a childish aspect in order to appeal to its younger audiences. It kind of bugged me at first, but once I made my peace with it, I focused on the flamboyant theme and enjoyed it to the max! 

We expected more from the secondary characters, especially Maya

We understand that the secondary characters are there to support the lead ones, but they could have given them more depth and more active parts, especially Kirby Howel-Baptiste (Maya), whose first appearance promised much more than what was delivered. 

After Cruella (Emma Stone) and the Baroness (Emma Thompson), the rest of the characters came off as rather cartoonish and fluffy, but nonetheless, it suited the movie’s general theme.

The video editing is a bit hurried

In a movie about a past era and a ravishing fashion, they managed to create beautiful visuals with the colors, patterns, and all the intricate details. Yet, the editing seemed to be a little rushed, and we were running breathless in order to catch up on all the beautiful details. We could have been given a little bit more time for example, to appreciate the beauty of the locations. 

They could have added a more hating factor to Cruella’s character

At the end of the day she’s a villain, but we understand that they wanted to tell her story, beyond the evil deeds she might or might not have done. But, besides the scary split personality syndrome, Cruella was lovely. However, we still have so many she-villains that we adore, including some within Arab cinema and TV shows.

Let’s flashback to some of our favorite Arab she-villains!

Raya and Sekina from the popular play

A well deserved first place ranking on this list, the comical personas and depth of the characters that unfolded towards the end of the play stole the audience’s heart forever. 

Negma Ibrahim from Raya and Sekina the movie 

The evilest of the villains. Her looks were terrifying, which we loved, but there was something about her charismatic vibe that was lovable. 

Layla Fawzy as the silent assassin from Darbt Shams

One of the most praise-worthy roles in Egyptian cinema. Layla didn’t say a single word, but instead, used her body language and facial expressions to express her character, and the result came out both terrifying and exceptional. We love her! 

El-Kataa from El-Afareet

We all love this movie. As children, we connected with the kids, and cheered for the ending when Belia joins her mother again, but we hated El-Kataa due to her intimidating character to our little innocent hearts. 

But, when we rewatch the movie, we can’t help but fall in love with this she-villain once we understood the genius captivating character it brought to the movie.

Tell us about your favorite Arab she-villains in the comment section.

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