Can a flight change someone’s life forever? In Ahmed Wael’s and Amr El-Daly’s “El-Rehla” \ “The Trip” series, the lives of the passengers on flight 710 heading to Cairo from Beirut, would never be the same again.
“El-Rehla” is a 30-episode series with a hook as each episode reveals new background information about one of the characters who the episode will be built on. This technique shows a great sequence of storytelling, allowing the viewer not get bored easily.
The series starts with Rania “Reham Abdel-Ghafour”, a drug addict with untrimmed hair, under eye circles and a mother to a six-year-old girl. Rania was being locked away with her daughter in a huge stony yet modern villa in Beirut for over six years by her psychopathic husband, Osama, “Basel Khayat”.
The events begin when she managed to escape that prison with her daughter and go on a plane heading to Cairo, where she meets with the other characters. On the airplane, there were Karima “Hanan motawie”, the modish fashion designer in her mid-thirties who have just discovered that she has cancer. Alongside her younger hipster sister Karma, the rising photographer. There is also Adam “Waleed Fawaz”, the bold enlightened script writer that was going to Beirut with his wife on their honeymoon, but issues arise leading them to cut their trip short and return to Cairo on that same plane.
On their trip back, the characters didn’t know or interact with each other. However, when they arrived at Cairo their life circles were destined to intersect. From the moment they landed at the airport, multiple incidents led them to know each other. Starting form Rania mistakenly taking Adam’s luggage instead of hers, until later when Osama goes to Karma and convinces her to help him find his wife and daughter after coming to Egypt in search for them.
For those viewers out there, who appreciate good acting, I encourage you not to miss Basel Khayat magnificent role playing with his fake belly, old fashioned glasses and banged wig. He perfectly acted a mentally ill person that you hate when you see him badly treating his wife. Despite appearing to be the bad guy, after knowing his mental illness conditions and witness how much he loves his wife, the viewer will have empathy towards him later on the show.
One other thing, that I really enjoy about the series is the production done by Trailer Pictures for Production, as from the first episode the decor is superb and the colours are smooth and heart-warming. Furthermore, the costumes are well fitting each character, which is an important aspect for any successful show.
However, one of the great disadvantages of the series is the prolongation of the events. There are many scenes that could be easily cut off without interfering with the series storytelling effectiveness. Besides, it will increase its chance for high viewership as the audience will not be bored and will be patient enough to continue the whole series.
Yet, I urge anyone who is looking for a thriller dramatic series, to watch these characters interacting together on DMC channels during this Ramadan. When the director Hossam Ali, who is well known for directing “30 Youm”/ “30 days” series last Ramadan, decides to cross the pathways of the series’ characters and put them all on the same trip of life.