Sassy Wadjda has a very 10-year-old wish: she wants to beat the boy next door in a bicycle race.

But for Wadjda [Waad Mohammed] this is not such an easy goal as she lives a repressed life with her family in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Wadjda is the latest screening from the Whanganui Film Society - and it is a particularly unique film. It is not only the first full-length film to be entirely shot in Saudi Arabia (a country in which cinema is banned) it's also the first feature directed anywhere by a Saudi woman, Haifaa Al Mansour.

The Telegraph reviewer, Robbie Collin, notes that Al Mansour was often restricted while shooting the film.

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"Al Mansour reveals in the film's production notes that she often had to direct from her production van via walkie-talkie," he said.

"Modest as it may look, this is boundary-pushing cinema in all the best ways, and what a thrill it is to hear those boundaries creak."

Wadjda will screen at the Davis Theatre at 7pm on September 19. This screening is open to Whanganui Film Society members only.