The Prince of Nothingwood review – affectionate portrait of a movie mogul

Sonia Kronlund’s engaging documentary focuses on the indomitable Salim Shaheen, who has made more than 100 films in war-torn Afghanistan

The show must go on, and movies must get made, and this holds true even or especially in troubled war zones. Film-maker Sonia Kronlund has made this funny and affectionate documentary portrait of veteran Afghan movie mogul Salim Shaheen: actor, producer, director and creator of more than 100 features. He is the prince of an industry he calls “Nothingwood” – a Hollywood that must make do with nothing at all.

The indomitable and bulky Shaheen, perennially giving his cast and public observers rousing pep talks and calling for a round of applause, resembles Diego Maradona. He admires the Bollywood style and the Bollywood work ethic and his work resembles those films, with a strong dash of the cheap’n’cheerful action shlock produced by Menahem Golan and Yoram Globus at Cannon Films in the 80s.

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