Along with the competition, Euromed Audiovisual is to organise three panels with prestigious guests.
Several Israeli productions as well as films from and about the Arab World – most of them dealing with the themes of insurgency and poetry – are among the line-up of the 62nd Berlinale (February 9 – 19, 2012). The selection - spread over the festival’s several side-bar sections and EFM screenings - will be accompanied by a series of discussions.
Berlinale Specials is to screen the Egyptian documentary Reporting… A Revolution by Bassam Mortada and the Spanish production Sons of the Clouds/The Last Colony by Alvaro Longoria, in which Oscar winning-actor Javier Bardem dives into the world of international diplomacy and reflects upon the History of Western Sahara.
Panorama is to show six remarkable titles. In Ami Livne’s feature-debut Sharqiya (Israel/Germany/France), a security guard decides to stage a terrorist attack at the Central Bus Station where he works in order to attract media attention to its future demolition. Hanan Abdallah’s In The Shadow of a Man (Egypt) focuses on four women describing the revolution according to their perspective and reflecting upon the meaning of being a woman in present-day Egypt. In Nalir Abdel Messeeh’s documentary The Virgin, The Copts and Me (France, Qatar, Egypt) the director interrogates the Copts (Egyptian minority Christians) about the apparition of the Virgin Mary. In Wilaya (Spain), director Pedro Pérez Rosado depicts the daily life of a Sahrawi refugee camp. In Sean McAllister’s The Reluctant Revolutionary (UK), a Yemenite tour guide becomes politicised through his experience with a customer. After the multi-awarded Garbage Dreams (2009), Mai Iskander returns with Words of Witness (US), a documentary about the life of a young journalist during the revolution, which led to the fall of Mubarak.
The Forum is to feature The Last Friday by Yahya Alabdallah (Jordan/ United Arab Emirates) and Tel Aviv-based Comino Films production Soldier/Citizen by Silvina Landsmann, while side-bar Generation is screening family drama Off White Lies by Maya Kenig (Israel). Another Israeli title, The Dolphin by Dani Menkin and Yonatan Nor, is screening in the framework of the Cinema for Peace initiative.
Short films also attracted the attention of the festival’s programmers. Berlinale Shorts is to show Lebanon’s Impossible Exchange by Mahmoud Hojeij and two Israeli productions: Batman at the checkpoint by Rafael Balulu and Bright Night by Noam Ziv. Five other shorts are part of the Forum Expanded programme: As They Say by Hicham Ayouch (Marocco/ United Arab Emirates), Bye Bye by Paul Geday (Egypt/ Netherlands), My Father is Still a Communist – Intimate Secrets to be Published by Ahmad Ghossein (Lebanon/ United Arab Emirates), King Lost hisTooth and T.S.T.L., both by Gheith Al-Amine (Lebanon).
The European Film Market will host eight documentaries and eight fiction productions. The documentaries include Emad Burnat and Guy Davidi’s 5 Broken Cameras (Israel/Palestine, Netherlands, France), Marcus Veter’s Cinema Jenin (Germany/Israel), Safinez Bousbia El Gusto (Ireland), Simon El Habre’s Gate 5 (Lebanon/Germany/Canada), Omar Shargawi and Karim El Hakim’s Half Revolution (Denmark), Mohamed Jabarah and Atia Al Daradji’s In My Mother’s Arms (UK/Iraq/Netherlands), Hanan Abdallah’s In The Shadow of Man (Egypt) and Nalir Abdel Messeeh’s The Virgin, The Copts and Me (France, Qatar, Egypt). Fiction productions include Amr Salama’s Asmaa (Egypt), Faouzi Bensaidi’s Death For Sale (Belgium/France/Morocco/United Arab Emirates), Fatma Zohra Zamoum’s How Big Is Your Love (Algeria/Morocco), Yahya Al-Abdallah’s The Last Friday (Jordan/United Arab Emirates), Sally El Hossaini’s My Brother The Devil (UK), Narjiss Nejjar’s The Rif Lover (Morocco/France/Belgium), Mohamed Asli’s Rough Hands (Morocco) and Pedro Pérez Rosado’s Wilaya (Spain).
Six discussions will accompany this long list of screenings: