In her latest documentary, director Tahani Rached takes us deep into the lives of adolescent girls living on the streets of Cairo, a place where violence, sex and drugs are a way of life. Be that as it may, the streets also provide these girls with the two things they cherish most -- freedom and love. From the opening shot of a young teen named Tata galloping down a busy street atop a horse, darting between cars and playfully teasing the plethora of honking horns and distraught motorists around her, we catch a whiff of power, not fatigue. It's this scene that defines the overall tone of These Girls, a film that focuses more on the present, and less on whatever traumatic event forced these children out of their homes and onto the streets.
In the case of Tata, she's been calling the streets home since age six, and has since become somewhat of a leader to this pack of rebellious teens. She has an edge that none of the other girls carry, yet they all share the same weakness -- men. Throughout the film, the girls share their concerns and fears of being kidnapped by random men to be held in a shack as some sort of sexual hostage. However, it's not the rape that bothers them -- they're more afraid of these men scarring their face, an act that's considered a major insult and perhaps the worst possible thing that could happen to a girl on the streets of Cairo.