Filmbild
Filmbild
Filmbild
Filmbild

Joana Hadjithomas, Khalil Joreige

France, Lebanon 2021. 100 Min.
Color. DCP. F/Arabic/e

The screening includes a lottery for the Festival bag 

Montreal. It is Christmas Eve, and a package is delivered to a middle-class house, where Maia, her mother, and her teenage daughter Alex live. Is it a gift? While the two women try to make the package disappear as quickly as possible in the basement, Alex's curiosity is aroused. She secretly researches its contents: photographs, films and letters, which were written by Maia to her friend living in exile in Paris. They show Alex a phase of her mother's life, her great first love, painful experiences during the Lebanese civil war (1975-1990). Slowly, Maia's veil of silence starts to lift as a result of her daughter's insistent questioning.

 

Based on a personal story, which consists of letters from Joana Hadjithomas and images by Khalil Joreige, the film reconstructs the past in different ways: with archive footage, Super 8 recordings, graphic novel fragments, playful intellectual flights and strong emotional impressions – mirrored in the cell phone aesthetics of the present. The filmmakers once again explore the fragmented evidence of Lebanese history and the diaspora. In the end, the directing duo unites its characters in Beirut for a moving celebration – and thereby alludes to the hope for a possible better future. (jp)

CREDITS

DirectorJoana Hadjithomas, Khalil Joreige
ScreenplayJoana Hadjithomas, Khalil Joreige, Gaëlle Macé
CinematographyJosée Deshaies
EditingTina Baz
MusicCharbel Haber, Radwan Moumneh
WithRim Turki, Manal Issa, Paloma Vauthier
ProducersChristian Eid, Barbara Letellier, Georges Schoucair, Carole Scotta
DistributionPlaytime, Paris, www.playtime.group

Joana Hadjithomas

The works of Joana Hadjithomas, born in Beirut in the summer of 1969 and raised during the Lebanese civil war (1975-1990), dig up traces of the history of a country that to this day is marked by war, assassinations, corruption and Mafia-like politics. Since the early 1990ies, she works with Khalil Joreige, establishing thematic and formal links between photography, video, performance, installation, sculpture, and cinema, being documentary or fiction film. Together, they have directed numerous films that have been shown and awarded in  important international film festivals like Cannes (Je veux voir, 2008) or Berlin (Memory Box, 2021), before having theatrical releases in many countries. Their artworks are part of major private and public collections including British Museum (London), Centre Georges Pompidou (Paris), or Solomon R Guggenheim Museum (New York).

Khalil Joreige

The works of Khalil Joreige, born in Beirut in the summer of 1969 and raised during the Lebanese civil war (1975-1990), dig up traces of the history of a country that to this day is marked by war, assassinations, corruption and Mafia-like politics. Since the early 1990ies, he works with Joana Hadjithomas, establishing thematic and formal links between photography, video, performance, installation, sculpture, and cinema, being documentary or fiction film. Together, they have directed numerous films that have been shown and awarded in  important international film festivals like Cannes (Je veux voir, 2008) or Berlin (Memory Box, 2021), before having theatrical releases in many countries. Their artworks are part of major private and public collections including British Museum (London), Centre Georges Pompidou (Paris), or Solomon R Guggenheim Museum (New York).