Cinema Palestina 31

Cinema Palestina (v)
The Veiled Hope

Norma Marcos (vrouw) France, 1994, 55 minutes, Color, DVD, Subtitled 
Order No. W99413

THE VEILED HOPE explores the personal and political challenges facing Palestinian women through a series of wonderful portraits of women living on the Gaza and West Bank. The women explain how in their daily lives as doctors, schoolteachers and activists they are working to rebuild Palestinian cultural identity. They also provide a rare insight into the complex feelings women have surrounding the emergence of political Islamic movements. THE VEILED HOPE gives an in-depth analysis of the position of Palestinian women as they juggle women’s and national liberation struggles.

A Very Hot Summer

by Areej Abu Eid 2016 | Documentary, 16.5 min

The filmmaker chronicles her personal experiences and losses during Israel’s war on Gaza in 2014: a Ramadan like no other – “a horror movie and we are in it.”
Winner: Best Documentary Short, Festival du Court Métrage Mediteranéen de Tanger
Diploma of Merit Prize, Tampere Short Film Festival, Finland

Videomappings: Aida, Palestine

Till Roeskens 2009 docu 46 min.

Till Roeskens employs an ingenious device to lend these oral testimonies by refugees in the Aida camp of the West Bank a striking visual dimension. On screen: nothing but another screen. At first untouched, a blank sheet of paper is slowly filled with lines. Then these lines grow, push and cross each other, to finally form a drawing, a layout. They unfold a topography, mark places, build houses, give directions, describe tangles of roads and obstacles. In essence, they are laying down “flat biographies”. Six sheets slowly come to life in this way, following the rhythms of stories told by children, women or men, people we never get to see. Where are these voices? Behind the sheets. Of course, but where else? Exile, mourning, divided space, it all creates a slowmotion animation, the visible testimony of an experience whose protagonists are de facto concealed: leaving only voices and scribbled signs. (Text adapted from Nicolas Féodoroff, FID Marseille).

The View

Hazim BitarRifqi Assaf 2008 drama 16 min

The View is composed of one shot and some very carefully choreographed performances. Adopting an unusual visual logic, to say the least, the work confronts the audience with an awkward viewpoint. From the director’s statement: “The View tells the story of an Israeli sniper who takes aim at an unsuspecting Palestinian couple. In the meanwhile, with a finger on the trigger, he kills time chatting over his radio with another soldier about life, death, and romance. The film explores the anatomy of violence in the absence of restraints.”

Villa Touma

by Suha Arraf / 2014 / 85′ Format / DCP, color. Runtime / 85 min.
Three unmarried aristocratic Christian sisters from Ramallah have been unable to come to terms with the new reality of occupation and the mass migration of Palestine’s aristocracy. In order to survive, they lock themselves away in their villa, clinging desperately to the nostalgia of their former glory. One day, their orphan niece Badia, walks into their lives and turns their world upside down. To preserve the family’s name, the three sisters try to marry her off to an eligible aristocratic Christian man. Will dragging Badia to every funeral, wedding, and church mass result in finding a good husband for her?

Suha Arraf was born in the Palestinian village of Melia, near the Lebanese border. She began her filmmaking career as a documentary producer. Among her works, she directed and produced the documentary Women of Hamas (2010), which was awarded in several international film festivals. She wrote the screenplays of The Syrian Bride (2004) and Lemon Tree (2008), both directed by Eran Riklis. Thanks to the latter’s script, she won the Best Screenplay Award at the Asia Pacific Screen Award and was nominated for Best Screenplay at the European Film Awards.
Interview met Arraf:

Villa Touma premieres in Haifa this Friday, 16 October. In November, Maria Zreik will be traveling to New York to represent the film at the “Other Israel Film Festival.” – See more at:

The Village under the Forest

Mark KaplanHeidi Grunebaum 2013 docu

What happened in ’48? It’s the question that haunts the Israel/Palestine dynamic and defines so much of the conflict. This doc strips back the layers of myth, from denial to stories of mass genocide, telling the real story through the hidden remains of the destroyed Palestinian village of Lubya. Lying under a purposefully cultivated forest plantation, it holds many of the answers not only to the country’s past, but also its future.
Unfolding as a personal meditation from the Jewish Diaspora, The Village Under The Forest explores the hidden remains of the destroyed Palestinian village of Lubya, which lies under a purposefully cultivated forest plantation called South Africa Forest.
Using the forest and the village ruins as metaphors, the documentary explores themes related to the erasure and persistence of memory and dares to imagine a future in which dignity, acknowledgement and co-habitation become shared possibilities in Israel/Palestine.
Full movie:

Winner of the Audience Award for Best South African Film at Encounters Documentary Festival 2013

The Villagers

Nidal Badarny Fiction Palestine 2015 11 min.

A tempestuous Palestinian love story alongside the ‘separation wall’. The story heads towards an end when Majdi decides to leave the country since his dreams and the plums can no longer find their space given the circumstances. His love, Salma, tries to stop him, but to no avail. Suddenly, Majdi and Salma escape from their secret love-nest near the wall, after ‘Abu Mustafa’ discovers their story. The tragic love story ends and a new story begins with a new protagonist, Abu Mustafa, with the same wall that remains present in all details; giant, grey, absurd. Simply an absurd film, because cinema is frivolous; cinema is absurd.

The Voice of a Condor

Heba El-Attar (vr), docu 45 min. 2014 USA/Chile. DCP. Spaans en Arab. gesproken met Engelse ondertitels.
THE VOICE OF A CONDOR explores the history and culture of Chile’s large community of Palestinian Christians. While the Christian population of the Holy Land has diminished to a meager 2%, Chile has been the home to the greatest concentration of Palestinians outside of the Middle East since the 19th century.

Voices Across the Divide

by Alice Rothchild
Voices Across the Divide explores the Israeli/Palestinian conflict through rarely heard personal stories. Narrated by Alice Rothchild, an American Jew raised on the tragedies of the Holocaust and the dream of a Jewish homeland in Israel, the film follows her personal journey as she begins to understand the Palestinian narrative, while exploring the Palestinian experience of loss, occupation, statelessness, and immigration to the US.
The documentary is both a personal journey to understand the Palestinian narrative as well as the implications and contradictions of deeply held cultural beliefs in the Jewish community.

Millions of dollars are spent on campus groups and in the media, aggressively promoting an Israel-right-or-wrong political stand and actively attacking students, professors, writers, and performers who exhibit sympathy or interest in “the other side.” This muzzling of the dialogue is a major threat to our fundamental principles of free speech and tolerance and thus to our basic democratic values. It is also deeply corruptive to our foreign policy and our ability to understand how others see us. Voices Across the Divide follows Alice Rothchild’s personal journey as she begins to understand the Palestinian narrative, while exploring the Palestinian experience of loss, occupation, statelessness, and immigration to the US, exploring voices for a just peace in the region. Written by Alice Rothchild

Voices from Gaza

Antonia Caccia 1989 docu 51 min.

Voices from Gaza was one of the earliest films made about the first Palestinian intifada. It documents both the consequences of living under Israeli occupation and the underground resistance that took form during the intifada. Palestinian men, women, and children speak frankly about the nature of Israel’s occupation: the curfews, routine arrests, and constant Israeli army patrols. But they also explain the work of the “popular committees” working to provide alternative education, health care, and welfare services, even under the most daunting of conditions.

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