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(2021, Sayood)
A film from Kuwait

"Your father wasn't wrong, but you did what he said at the wrong time. Your friends weren't wrong either. But you took their advice at the wrong time. And mistakes build up. At some point, you regret that you didn't take some advice, and you don't go ahead with the next stage."

Since the moment we're born, life is a constant barrage of trial-and-error decisions. What to play, who to play with, what to eat, who to hang out with, where to study, what to study, where to live, who to marry... it's all an endless cycle of decisions to which, more often than not, we feel ill-prepared. And yet, we choose, and go ahead with the next stage.

Al Maht (or All Eyes on Him) is a Kuwaiti animated film that follows Tawfeeq (Sayood), a young man stuck on that cycle of decisions. The film starts with him as he's about to graduate high school, and follows his life as he tries to navigate some of the above questions of life.

This was certainly an interesting watch, especially because of how it tries to juggle different tones. On one hand, the film features some hit-and-miss comedy beats that are thrown at a frenetic, non-stop pace; but on the other hand, some of the themes that are explored regarding life choices and the effects they have for ourselves and those around us are relatively well presented.

Tawfeeq is an artistic young man that likes to draw. However, life takes him away from that path for different reasons, and he ends up sacrificing what he loves for what is considered a more regular life. But then again, life has ways to try to put you back on track, but only as new and different questions and choices arise.

I really appreciated the film's efforts to dive into these profound topics, but although I enjoyed a lot of the more fast-paced, juvenile humor, I wish the film would've "sat down" for a while at moments to allow some of these life ponderings sink a bit more, while also giving some of its subplots and storyline detours more space to breathe.