A subtle undercurrent exists in the visuals, which use cheerful billboard advertising, such as a mattress company with a man happily asleep, or a social responsibility pitch for “planting hope,” as casual background images to reinforce the disconnect between phony optimism and reality. Perhaps the sense of deja vu in the pic’s first half is necessary for the power of the second, in which treacheries are constantly guessed at and possibilities of redemption dissolve in a situation with no exit…
Omar does not offer the promise of a just or satisfying resolution, a fatalism all the more devastating given its realistic methods and humane, understated performances. The film’s final scene feels shocking and abrupt, but also chillingly inevitable, consistent with the logic of a situation that defies all reason. Continue reading
The follow up to Annemarie Jacir’s award-winning feature debut Salt of the Sea, When I Saw You tells the tale of a young Palestinian boy and his mother as they struggle to maintain their dignity after being displaced from their West Bank by the Israeli army in 1967. Defeated by the Israelis for the second time in their quest to liberate Palestine, numerous Palestinians and their families join refugees from the 1948 conflict in refugee camps located in nearby Arab countries. 11-year-old Tarek (Mahmoud Asfa) and his mother Ghaydaa (Ruba Blal) are just two of the thousands who were displaced when the Israeli army seized control of the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Desperate, they seek shelter at the Harir Camp in Jordan while anxiously awaiting the return of Tarik’s father, Ghassan. Later, when Ghassan fails to appear, Tarik grows emboldened by his encounter with a band of heavily-armed Palestinian freedom fighters, and decides to join their ranks.
Jason Buchanan, allmovie Continue reading
“Pasolini Pa* Palestine is an attempt to repeat Pasolini’s trip to Palestine in his film, Seeking Locations in Palestine for The Gospel According to Matthew (1963). It adapts his script into a route map superimposed on the current landscape, creating contradictions and breaks between the visual and the audible, the expected and the real. The video explores the question of repetition. For Heidegger Wiederholung ‘repetition, retrieval’ is one of the terms he uses for the appropriate attitude toward the past. “By the repetition of a basic problem we understand the disclosure of its original, so far hidden possibilities.” The project ventures a conversation and a dialogue with Pasolini, especially his ‘Poem for the Third World’. Discutere ‘to smash to pieces’ is the Latin source of dialogue, discussion. The piece does not criticize Pasolini, but reveals unnoticed possibilities in his thought and works back to the ‘experiences’ that inspired it.” (Ayreen Anastas) Continue reading
Plot Synopsis by Josh Ralske
Said (Kais Nashef) is a young Palestinian living in Nablus, and working as a mechanic. He gets his friend Khaled (Ali Suliman) a job, but the hot-tempered and impulsive Khaled quickly loses it. Suha (Lubna Azabal), a pretty, well-traveled young woman and the daughter of a well-known “martyr,” brings her car in to be fixed, and flirts with Said. He’s clearly interested in her, so much so that he continues to think of her when he’s approached later that day by Jamal (Amer Hlehel), who tells him that he’s been selected for an important mission, a suicide bombing in Tel Aviv, and that Khaled will be joining him, as they had requested. That night, Jamal stays with Said at his mother’s (Hiam Abbass) house, while another man stays with Khaled. Said sneaks off during the night to bring Suha her car keys, and has a brief discussion with her about her father’s death, and what options the Palestinians have in their dealings with Israel. Continue reading