The Films That Influenced Shahad Ameen’s ‘Scales’

To mark the US release of Shahad Ameen's Scales (Sayidat Al Bahr), the writer-director shares the films that have influenced her “as a human and a filmmaker”. Read Shahad's notes below for insights into how these films have shaped her vision.

Scales premiered at the 2019 Venice Film Festival, winning the Verona Film Club Award, and was selected as Saudi Arabia's entry for Best International Feature Film at the 2021 Academy Awards. Shahad’s dystopian debut is now in Los Angeles and New York theaters as of Friday, July 9, 2021, with a US rollout to follow, courtesy of Variance Films.

Note from Shahad, July 2021:

“Films allowed me to create my interpretation of the world—a way to escape reality or…

  • Scales
  • Whale Rider
  • Beasts of the Southern Wild
  • Pan's Labyrinth
  • Princess Mononoke
  • Melancholia
  • Stalker
  • Medea
  • The Tree of Life
  • Tokyo Story
  • The Cruel Sea
  • The New World
  • Days of Heaven
  • The Searchers