“When I Saw You,” “Detroit Unleaded” and more at Houston Palestine Film Fest

The seventh annual Houston Palestine Film Fest launches at the Museum of Fine Arts on Friday with Annemarie Jacir’s award-winning feature When I Saw You. (Jacir discussed her must-see film with The Electronic Intifada last month).

There are three additional days of screenings over this weekend and the next, at both the museum and the Rice Media Center, including:

  • Mahdi Fleifel’s documentary A World Not Ours, described as a “portrait of three generations of exile in the refugee camp of Ein al-Hilweh, in southern Lebanon”
  • the sci-fi short Nation Estate by Larissa Sansour, which “explores a vertical solution to Palestinian statehood”
  • Habibi by Susan Youssef, a modern take on the classic tale Majnun Layla set in Gaza and
  • Detroit Unleaded, the feature-length debut by Rola Nashef, “a spirited comedy-drama set in a small, family-owned Detroit gas station”

Read short reviews of the film selections by Hadeel Assali, founder of the Houston festival, who notes: “We are seeing a real renaissance in Palestinian and Arab cinema, and especially exciting is the fact that Arab women are leading the way (all but one film are directed by women).”

Nakba anniversary screening in Toronto

The annual Toronto Palestine Film Festival doesn’t run until 28 September but the festival will be holding a special screening of Ahmad Damen’s The Red Stone on 15 May to commemorate the 65th anniversary of the Nakba, the ethnic cleansing and forced dispossession of Palestine.

The festival website describes The Red Stone:

Taking its title from the characteristic red stone with which many of Jerusalem’s historic buildings are built, Ahmad Damen’s investigative documentary focuses on Palestinian areas of west Jerusalem that were depopulated in 1948.

“While tracking the architectural and family histories of these splendid properties, The Red Stone introduces the buildings’ current occupants, the Israeli real estate companies trading in their “exotic” appearances, and the original owners mant of whom are now barred from their homes.

For more information, visit: http://tpff.ca/

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Maureen Clare Murphy

Maureen Clare Murphy's picture

Maureen Clare Murphy is the managing editor of The Electronic Intifada and lives in Chicago.