Newton's Cradle: When Drama Dives into The Complex Human Psyche

An Egyptian Series About Life and Where Our Decisions Lead Us

A shot for the star Mona Zaki from the Newton's Cradle series. (Supplied)
A shot for the star Mona Zaki from the Newton's Cradle series. (Supplied)

Newton's Cradle: When Drama Dives into The Complex Human Psyche

Every action has a reaction equal in magnitude and opposite to it in direction. This is Newton's third law of motion that rules our life on Earth. But what is Newton's Cradle? And what is the relationship between it and the series?

Newton's cradle is a device that demonstrates the conservation of momentum and the conservation of energy with swinging spheres. When one sphere at the end is lifted and released, it strikes the stationary spheres, transmitting a force through the stationary spheres that push the last sphere upward. The last sphere swings back and strikes the nearly stationary spheres, repeating the effect in the opposite direction.

This sums up our life. Actions lead us to results that are based primarily on what we do and in response to our decisions in a circle where everything is connected.

"Newton's Cradle" (Le’bet Newton) is an Egyptian TV series that was broadcast during the Holy Month of Ramadan this year. It is written and directed by the director Tamer Mohsen featuring the stars, Mona Zaki, Mohamed Farraj, Mohamed Mamdouh and Sayed Ragab.

Since the beginning of the Ramadan season, the series "Newton's Cradle" has received high ratings and great admiration for its storyline, especially on social media. Between various events of excitement, suspense, drama, romance and comedy as well, there was an outstanding extent of audience interaction with the series characters and their motives as shown by the viewers’ sympathy, fear, criticism and efforts to understand why the characters did their actions!

The establishment of the series and its main characters entering the plot without introductions created a tense atmosphere that attracted the audience. All of the factors, starting from the introduction, the acting, the cinematography, the story and the directing, made an excellent first episode and introduced a high-level work that met the expectations of the audience.


Balancing balls Newton's cradle. (Getty)


The series tells a story of a middle-class Egyptian couple.  The wife is "Hana," who is an agricultural engineer, and her husband is "Hazem," who is an owner of a project for producing honey bees. They seek the birth of their first child in the United States of America to obtain the nationality of the most powerful country in the world. The relationship between Hazem and Hana is considered a traditional one in which a man is responsible for all aspects of life and there is a lack of confidence in the behavior of his wife.

Hana had the same lack of confidence as her mother before she got married which in the long term made her seek to prove to those around her that she is trustworthy. The idea of traveling to the United States came to her mind when her husband praised a pregnant woman who traveled to the USA to acquire its nationality for her child, referring to her as smart. Hana decided to prove that she also can do this even though there are many challenges. Hana traveled to America with her work delegation to attend a conference, but with a secret pre-arranged plan. She decided to leave the delegation and escape to a fate that she did not know well and the adventure continued.

Hana faced many challenging and difficult situations in the first episodes of the series in America. The fear of losing her child takes possession of her mind, especially as she is in a strange society with a culture new to her, and this angst appears in every expression of the superstar Mona Zaki.

What is exceptional about Newton's Cradle is that it does not present or rely only on interesting events that drive the audience to passionately follow the series, but it provides us with a brilliant and attractive explanation of the motives of the characters and the unfolding of these events. The idea of what is coming next is literally unpredictable, as in our lives we cannot know what will happen in the next hours or days.

And this is the most important point as it creates a state of unity with the events of the series and its heroes as they are involved in their adventures.

The complicated human behaviors "Everyone has his-her own game"

The events and actions are complicated. Sometimes the audience sympathized with the characters, but at other times they did not and I think this is the major thing we can measure success through!

How easy is it to judge others and how easy is it to talk about a moral rule? But did you ask yourself before what would you choose if you were on the other side?

Newton's cradle is not only about Hana and Hazem's story but is also about us, with all our fears, ambitions, and decisions! What Tamer Mohsen did is that he introduced to us very mixed complicated characters and reflected the nature of existence where there is the evil and the good.

The characters also fluctuate in their attitudes and emotions and are breakable from the inside. They do both good and bad actions which make you unable to determine for whom you have sympathy.

The third main character is Mu'nis, the "Islamic" businessman who has American citizenship and uses religion and formal religiosity as a front to achieve his material and emotional goals. He falls in love with Hana when he was supposed to just help her in a foreign country.

Mu'nis tried to help her get her child back after the infant was taken from her due to Hana’s threat to the hospital staff that she will kill herself if she did not see the baby after he was taken to the nursery. Hana was considered a threat to her child's life.

Right after he helped Hana by putting his name on the birth certificate to prevent giving the baby to another family, he takes advantage of the misfortunes that are afflicting her to separate her from her husband and to marry her.

When we talk about the other characters like the talented Sayed Rajab and Aisha bin Ahmed, we should say that they excelled in performing their parts but their characters' building was not as deep as the three main ones. For example, Sayed Rajab’s character seems a strong one who rejects his painful reality, and tries to escape from it. This power and control appear in his way of talking, tone of voice, calm expressions and not taking things seriously, but we also see when he lost his love, all his weaknesses appeared and we discovered that he has nothing to do! We, like a bank note, have two sides: weakness and strength; good and evil; and, motives and actions. The series also discussed important issues such as marital rape and verbal divorce.

A reality reflex

Newton's cradle puts many questions in front of us— What are we supposed to do if we were in the position of the heroes of the story? Will we make the right decision or are our desires and aspirations the things that control us? Do we own our destiny or does it own us depending on our actions? Do we own our actions?

Do we need to know the full picture to make the right decisions? Is the picture not always complete and this is the reason we suffer? There are many questions and many expectations but the definite thing is that we are in front of a unique series that stands among other works and says “the story of our complicated human nature and social relationships can be a great one to discover."

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