The Square ignites a revolutionary spark in all of us, bringing about the question, “What does happen after a country leads a revolution that throws a single man out of power?” The answer, in Egypt’s case, is a long, arduous trip to finding democracy, which brings us to their present day struggle to get past the corrupt undercurrents of the new government. The movie follows various citizens as they take control of Tahrir Square in 2011, leading to the now-famous revolt against Mubarak’s dictatorial government. We are treated to happiness in the film’s opening scenes as we see the success of citizens banding together as one to help reunite a country in turmoil. The problem lies within the savage violence from the military and the attempt to reestablish the country’s infrastructure that, while better, still remains today. It’s a maddening, piercing, investigative documentary that plays like a character study. It’s only more saddening when we realize this is Egypt’s reality, and that the dead bodies put in front of the camera at times are people’s children, friends, and loved ones. It’s horrifying, but Noujaim’s film is relentless in nature and fiercely determined. 

Grade: ★★★½ (out of 5)

Written by Eric Forthun