13 Arab films in the fifth session of the Cairo Film Days Festival

The activities of the fifth session of the Cairo Film Days Festival, organized by Cinema Zawya in Cairo, will start from May 25 to June 21, with screenings of 13 diverse films, including fiction, documentaries and documentaries, from Egypt, Palestine, Lebanon, Iraq, Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia.

Cairo Days Festival poster – photo of the festival’s account on Facebook

The program highlights the latest Arab film productions screened for the first time at international festivals in recent years, including two films from Egypt, the documentary “From Cairo” directed by Hala Galal, which premiered in Arabic. Cinema Horizons competition, at the last session of the Cairo Film Festival. International.

The film revolves around the success of (Heba and Aya) making free choices in their own lives despite all the challenges of making an inspiring, intimate and joyful story. The film presents the choices of characters and the courageous and ambitious challenges that women face. the city of Cairo without being overwhelmed by fear.

Cairo Days Festival poster – photo of the festival’s account on Facebook

The film raises the question: “How does a lonely woman live in Cairo?” Heba is a single mother who has a child, Ward, and Aya, who lost her parents early on, is working on completing her first film as a director, in telling the stories of women who have been subjected to “male” domestic violence which disfigures their faces.

The second Egyptian film is the documentary “From and to Mer” directed by Maggie Morgan, which won the award for best film encouraging women’s work at the latest edition of the Aswan International Women’s Film Festival.

In the film, the director goes to visit Mir, the village where her grandparents were born, a place they left but remained connected to. But when she visits Mir now, she discovers a place that most of its inhabitants want to leave.

The Cairo Film Days will also show 5 films from Lebanon: “Costa Brava” directed by Mona Akl, a Lebanese production starring Denmark, France, Norway, Qatar, Spain and Sweden, screened during the latest issue of Venice is. International Film Festival, and won the Netback Award at the Toronto International Film Festival.

The latest revolves around the Badri family escaping from toxic pollution in Beirut, by going to a self-sustaining mountain house built by the bold family. But, unexpectedly, a new landfill is being built outside their fence, bringing the mess and corruption of an entire country to their doorstep. Heaps of rubbish pile up, and the struggle between departure and resistance escalates, threatening the family’s unity and its ideal home.

And “The Sea Before You” directed by Elie Dagher, whose production is co-produced by France, Belgium and the United States, which won the award for best project in development at the third session of CineGouna Platform, and was shown . last year during the Directors’ Week at the Cannes Film Festival International Film Festival, and the latest edition of the Berlin Film Festival.

The events of the film revolve around a Lebanese young woman returning from France to her family’s home in Beirut, from which she fled after several bad experiences she went through.

The film “The River” is directed by Ghassan Salhab, co-produced by France, Germany and Qatar, and screened at the Locarno International Film Festival.

It revolves around a man and a woman who are about to leave a restaurant in the heart of the Lebanese mountains. Surprised by the buzz of fighter jets at low altitude, and with the heightened feeling that war is about to break out again, the man begins to search for the woman after she has gone out of his sight.

The film “Maya’s Notebooks” directed by Joanna Hajji Touma, Khalil Joreige, co-produced by France, Canada and Qatar, together with Lebanon, was screened in the official competition of the Berlin International Film Festival.

The film revolves around Maya, a single mother, who lives with her teenage daughter Alex in Montreal. On Christmas Eve, Alex and her mother receive an unexpected consignment: notebooks, tapes and photos that Maya sent to her best friend from Beirut during the 1980s. Maya refuses to open the box or confront the memories of it, but Alex secretly begins to dive into it, and Alex enters her mother’s tumultuous and passionate teenage world during the Lebanese Civil War, exposing the mysteries of a hidden past.

The fifth Lebanese film is “A Hope Comes” directed by Georges Peter Berberi, which was screened at the Berlin and Istanbul film festivals last year.

It revolves around three difficult teenagers who are on their way to becoming a man. Through many unexpected events, Etienne undertakes an unexpected journey within himself.

From Tunisia, the “Cairo Film Days” movie “Corban” directed by Naguib Belkadhi, which premiered at the Red Sea International Film Festival, and whose events revolve around Sarah, who is at a distance from her home work in the field of humanitarian relief, and work during the quarantine period. It helps people whose condition has deteriorated due to the Corona virus. The man gets “Qais” which suffers from psychological disorders without his medicine, which is no longer available in the market. Then the stage of falling into the abyss begins as nature regains its rights, and the air becomes purer and more breathable.

Also from Tunisia is the film “What You Hear Was the Wind” directed by Ismail, Youssef Chabi, which was screened at the Rotterdam and Moscow film festivals last year, and the events revolve around Nada, who suffers from hearing impairment and a double life. , by day she leads a lonely and boring life and by night a violent life.

The Cairo Film Days will also show the movie “Majnoun Farah” directed by Leila Bouzid, a Tunisian-Algerian-French production, which was screened in the Critics’ Week competition at the Cannes Film Festival and the Toronto Film Festival last year. .

Its events revolve around Ahmed, a young Frenchman of Algerian origin, 18 years old, who lives in the suburbs of Paris. At university, Farah meets a lively young Tunisian who has just arrived in Paris. While discovering a collection of Arabic erotic poetry that he never thought existed, Ahmed falls in love with Farah and, despite falling in love with her, tries to resist his emotions.

As for the documentary film “Their Algeria” directed by Lina Swielem, co-produced by Algeria, Qatar, France and Switzerland, it was screened at the International Documentary Film Festival in Amsterdam last year, and it won the award for best Arabic documentary film. at the El Gouna Film Festival.

In the film, the director tells of her grandparents (Aisha and Mabrouk) who decided to divorce, and they now live in two opposite buildings, and she does not understand the reason for their separation, as no one did not explain to her, and she had no knowledge of the story, until they silently made her thinner.

The director says her grandmother, Aisha, married her grandfather Mabrouk in 1952 in the village of Laouamer in Algeria, without prior knowledge of each other. Two years later, they settled in an old village in France called Thiers, and lived there for up to 60 years. Mabrouk worked all his life as a cleaner in a factory that makes knives. Aisha lived under the care of a man she did not know and with whom she had a family.

The director adds that her journey to understand the reason for this separation is leading her to Algeria and to the silence imposed on exile on two generations, her father and her own, to alleviate the suffering that accompanied their upbringing. discover. An education that is difficult to describe.

The director embarks on a journey in search of the story of exile with the help of her father Zine El-Din, the story of unanswered ties, the story of suffering and pride, a story that left a deep impact on her lives has. grandfather, grandmother and a whole generation of Algerians who immigrated to France.

Moroccan director Nabil Ayouch will present the movie “Ali Your Voice”, a Moroccan-French production that was screened in the official competition of the Cannes Film Festival last year, as well as at the Palm Springs Film Festival.

The film revolves around the former rapper Anas, who works in a cultural center in a poor neighborhood in Casablanca, where he meets young people who have something to say but do not know the means. Encouraged by their unconventional mentor, these emerging artists transcend the demands of tradition, glamorous modernity, and religious extremism to find their own voice by using rap as their medium. With their joy, passion and vitality in music, these young people convey an energy that reaches viewers directly, and this work, presented in this year’s Cannes competition, embodies the true vitality of Moroccan youth.

“Kol Shi Mako” was directed by Maysun Pachachi and co-produced by Iraq, Kuwait, UAE, Qatar, United Kingdom, France and Germany, and screened at the Sarajevo Film Festival last year.

The events of the film take place in Iraq in the winter of 2006, during the nights of the curfew, and in a diverse traditional Baghdad neighborhood whose residents try to live their daily lives as they are, and in the middle of their intertwined stories are Sarah, a novelist and single mother of a 9-year-old girl named Rima.

Cairo Cinema Days is an Egyptian film festival for Arab films, launched by Cinema Zawya in 2017. It is considered to be the first festival of its kind launched and organized by Cinema Zawya in Cairo, with the aim of opening a window for the Egyptian public to see what is going on in the independent Arab cinema arena.Important for those who are interested in the film industry and watching it from different Arab countries.

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