Sample Literature Review Paper on The film Incendies/Scorched by Wajdi Mouawad

In literature, the theme of a story or film is generally what the book or the movie is about.
in a real sense, the concepts that recur and pervade through a book or a film are always
reinforced by motifs. The recurring element that has symbolic significance in a narrative is the
motif. When reading or watching a movie, one is able to spot a concept, a symbol, or even the
structure that repeatedly surfaces in the text. These identifiable elements in any narrative by the
reader are the motif of that narrative. Motifs should always be related to the central theme of the
story, and they end up reinforcing the author's overall message. A reader should be able to link
the motif to the main ideas in a narrative. The theme of a narrative is its soul, while motifs
reinforce the theme by repeating a particular element of the narrative. The forms of history and
the representation of memory in Wajdi Mouawad's 2010 film Incendies, directed by Denis
Villeneuve, will be examined in this article.
The film follows the story of twin brothers and sisters who are on the verge of unraveling
the mystery of their mother's former life and the tranquility of her youth. The film, a classic
retelling of the Oedipus story, focuses on the social, cultural, and personal recollections of the
main characters, who are children in exile. The film provides a forum for Mouawad to testify to
his childhood trauma, war trauma, the trauma of adjusting to exile life, and the difficulty of
returning to his country as this article says when circumstances force you to go from one location
to another, Mouawad creativity forces the filmmakers to analyze the film's relationship to the
"A book about survival is a lesson in adaptation," Michael Philip explains, "and a movie
production that draws the audience in by delving so deeply into the characters' psyches that their

discoveries become your own." The viewer may imagine what happened in the past and relate it
to the current situation thanks to the film. Mouawad achieves the peak of poetic expression
through symbolic representation, transforming memory into a unique and almost tangible aspect
on stage. The film also functions as a historical source because the audience can relate to and
recall Middle Eastern history.
Looking at its political and social position, the film is staged to speak on behalf of the
imaginary community or one that is exiled of its subjects. A community that shares cultural
customs and mother tongue is different from the customs and language of the adopted country.
To the audience, the thought of my nation will rein to be an image that will resonate as a product
of a wishful thought and memory. As Derek Walcott (346) argues that “A voluntarily exile who
can frequently reunite with his/her native country portry this exilic nation as a land in transition."
As in the case of Wajdi Mouawad, an exiled child who has no recollection that is clear about his
native land will continuously strive to talk about it through imagination.
In the film Incendies, Mouawad is given a staged platform to relate his childhood
testimony. It starts with a poetic intersection, then carries on to fiction and historical narrative,
finally concluding in a dramatic film's fictitious truth and the historical truth of the location.
Mouawad's firsthand account of events demonstrates this. As a result, the picture serves as a
metaphor for the author's fictitious origin. Lebanon is shown in a similar fashion in the film, with
the imaginary exilic community as a whole flashing back, visualizing, and invoking it in their
stories. Mouawad's personality is transformed into a fictitious Tran social group in Lebanon's
"on-stage" fiction.
The film Incendies portrays the second migration of his family. He mourns her mother's
death, who was an artist; therefore, the film is a consolation of the post-memory with his present

memories. For instance, creating the image of a small garden behind their home, the paradise of
a young writer, is conjoined to the author's memory to the semi-fictional and semi-real of his
home that disappeared. The small garden that is bombed behind the picturesque old house in the
mountains and ruins Wahab's childhood reflects how the childhood of Harwan is also destroyed.
The scenario of the terrorists attacking a bus boarded by civilians and a small boy witnessing the
horrible event culminated in war. Probably this is the author explaining what he himself
witnessed, and he can transpose his artistic witness.
The film highlights the value of personal testimony and community memory in its
philosophical investigation. It highlights the need to share personal horror stories to achieve
community rehabilitation. The film depicts the Lebanese civil war via Nawal's battle for love,
torture, civic resistance, and, eventually, witness silence. Mouawad's theatric begins by repeating
history but then "forgets" the performance's true purpose; the theatre's "here and now"
holistically swallows the audience. According to Aristotle, "fairly stories of war are memories of
children's shot of memory- remote in time and distorted imagination." When evaluating Moua's
lyrical rhythms, they determine an imagined story, set in a historical period without any magic
but enriched with geographical and temporary changes (Brooke 127).
For example, the scene in Alphonse Lebel's backyard (episode 19) depicts the theatrics of
presenting history on page and stage as seen by the authors. The Notary requests that the twins
sign their mother's will, emphasizing Nawal's phobia of transportation. During the battle, Nawal
saw gunmen set fire to the bus and burn the passengers alive. In the backyard, this is an overlap
of a previous photograph. It is revealed that Nawal was a passenger on that bus when she tells
her friend Sawda the truth. One woman attempted to run via a window but was shot by the
military, and she died as a consequence" (Scorched 43). This terrifying episode in the film is not

a mere imagination of the author but a memory of an actual attack on Lebanon that led to civil
war. This could be that Mouawad witnessed this attack then. In the film, Nawal delivers this
memory to the twins through the theatric power of testimony. The memories of Nawal and the
twins' journey to the East suggest the persistence of trauma that is passed from one generation to
the other regardless of the generation gap. As Mouawad insists in the film, separating the past
and the present within the post-exilic identity subjects is hard.
The story of Nawal in the film unfolds a series of flashbacks that are coded in a narrative.
The story extends to the time when Nawal falls in love with Wahab. In her village, which was
Christian-based, love was forbidden, and this led her to be given several choices to pick. She is
therefore forced to forget Wahab; she is denied the love she had for him. The memory of the past
by Nawal makes her reveal the truth to her children but after her death so that they could trace
their origin. She was doing all this in memory of her first love.
In conclusion, the search of the twins to discover themselves can only be completed
within the confines of the exilic imaginary (Jestrovic and Meerzon 8-10). The truth of the past
can only be revealed to the children through artistic inquiry, re-imagining, and reframing of the
past. With the twin's direct interaction and encounter in the city, the images and narratives given
to them in the past get their new reality physically in the present(Hirsch and Spitzer 270).
Reflecting on the author's works, children of exile often work hard to beat the confines of their
distorted childhood memories combined with fantasies found in cultural narratives and move
their exilic imagination to their adopted land. Paradoxically, Incendies presents to the audience
with a possibility of a historical world rather than a fictional narrative. The film assists the
audience in searching for their past and figuring out the relationship of another generation born
somewhere else.


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