Saturday, October 2, 2010

2010 Toronto Palestine Film Festival, October 2-8

The 3rd annual Toronto Palestine Film Festival begins today and runs for one week. It features films by and about Palestinians. It opens tonight at 6:30 with a screening of Elia Suleiman's The Time That Remains. The closing night film will be Budrus by Julia Bacha.

Screenings take place throughout the week. In addidtion, there will be industry events, panels, breakfasts and Q&A sessions with attending filmmakers. A highlight will be Thursday's panel discussion A Conversation with Ken Loach and Paul Laverty. Ken Loach is a highly respected Irish filmmaker and Paul Laverty is his Scottish writing collaborator.


Saturday, October 2nd

The Time That Remains
Saturday, October 2nd at 6:30pm Directed by Elia Suleiman in 2009Film length: 109 min. Country: France, Belgium, Italy, UK A beautiful, unique, and deeply personal depiction of Palestine since 1948 from the internationally acclaimed director of Divine Intervention, Elia Sulieman. The Time That Remains is a semi-autobiographical film, in four episodes, about a family from 1948 until recent times. The film is inspired by the director's father’s private diaries, starting from when he was a resistance fighter in 1948, and his mother’s letters to family members who were forced to leave the country. The film attempts to portray the daily life of those Palestinians who remained and were labelled "Israeli-Arabs", living as a minority in their own homeland.
Official Selection, Competition, Festival de Cannes (2009)
Online Sales for this screening have closed. You can purchase tickets in person on Saturday October 2nd at Beit Zatoun between 12:00 noon and 4:00pm or at the box office after 5:00pm. Note very limited number of seats remaining

Sunday, October 3rd

Sahtain! TPFF’s Traditional Palestinian Breakfast

Sunday, October 3rd at 11:00am Join TPFF as we host a traditional Palestinian breakfast catered by highly reviewed Palestinian chef and owner of 93 Harbord, Isam Kaisi.
This event is not included as part of TPFF 10 Card
Online Sales for Sahtain! have closed. You can purchase tickets in person on Saturday October 2nd at Beit Zatoun between 12:00 noon and 4:00pm or at the box office after 5:00pm. Note only a limited number of tickets are still available.
Sunday, October 3rd at 3:00pm TPFF hosts a discussion panel featuring Michel Khleifi, acclaimed Palestinian director (Wedding in Galilee, Zindeeq) and Palestinian-Canadian Producer Christina Piovesan (Amreeka, The Whistleblower). They will discuss their experiences making films on Palestine and filming in Palestine, and share their thoughts on the future direction of Palestinian cinema.

Free of charge

Monday, October 4th

Lesh Sabreen?
Monday, October 4th at 7:00pm Directed by Muayad Mousa Alayan in 2009Film length: 20 min. Country: Palestine Canadian Premiere Set in a Palestinian neighbourhood in Jerusalem, Lesh Sabreen? tells the story of two young lovers as they navigate dreams and dead-ends in their socially-conservative and Israeli-controlled community. The film illustrates the several layers of authority, from the patriarchal social norms and taboos, to economic pressures and the military occupation, continually facing young Arab Jerusalemites.
Official Selection Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival, Official Selection Aspen Shortsfest, Special Jury Mention La Cittadella Corto
Inshallah Beijing!
Inshallah Beijing!
Monday, October 4th at 7:00pm Directed by Francesco Cannito and Luca Cusani in 2008Film length: 54 min. Country: Italy Canadian Premiere Ghadir dreams that at last someone will buy her some running shoes. Nader trains while hoping that a missile doesn't land on him. Zakia hasn't got a permit from the military authorities to get to the swimming pool. They are athletes belonging to the Palestinian team who leave Jericho in July 2008 to take part in the Beijing Olympic games. Inshallah, God willing - because a lot of difficulties must be overcome before reaching China. First and foremost, the difficulty in competing for a country that doesn't exist yet – Palestine – and that doesn't have the means to support its athletes. It won't be easy to adapt because the war is not just at home: the athletes carry it inside them. Getting to Beijing is already a victory.
Al Jazeera International Documentary Festival (Award: Best Documentary on Palestinian Affairs)
9 Aab (9 August)
Monday, October 4th at 9:00pm Directed by Talal Khoury in 2009Film length: 12 min. Country: Lebanon North American Premiere A tribute to Mahmoud Darwish, the late master of Arabic poetry, this short, bittersweet film explores the aftermath of a death in both public and private contexts.
Dubai International Film Festival Jury Prize
As the Poet Said
Monday, October 4th at 9:00pm Directed by Nasri Hajjaj in 2009Film length: 65 min. Country: Palestine Canadian Premiere An evocative and lyrical paean to the life and times of late Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish, this thoughtful film sees director Nasri Hajjaj taking us on a journey through Darwish's life. He tours the cities and towns the poet lived in, meeting contemporaries, writers and lovers of his work and overlaying the mosaic of memories and reflections with readings of Darwish's works throughout. This heart-warming tribute is a fitting epitaph to a man whose words and dreams have inspired a generation.
Screened at Dubai International Film Festival (2009) Houston Palestine Film Festival (2010)

Tuesday, October 5th

Targeted Citizen
Tuesday, October 5th at 7:00pm Directed by Rachel Leah Jones for Adalah in 2010Film length: 15 min. Country: Palestine, Israel
North American Premiere
Targeted Citizen produced by filmmaker Rachel Leah Jones for Adalah, surveys discrimination against the Palestinian citizens of Israel. These interviews are reinforced by the contrasting informality of on-the-street conversations conducted by Palestinian comic duo Shammas-Nahas and punctuated by the film’s theme song Targeted Citizen, written and recorded by Palestinian rap trio DAM especially for Adalah, tells it like it is without missing a beat.
Tuesday, October 5th at 7:00pm Directed by Michel Khleifi in 2009Film length: 85 min. Country: Palestine, Belgium, UK, UAE
Canadian Premiere
Director in Attendance
Acclaimed director Michel Khleifi's story of a Palestinian film-maker 'M' living in Europe, who returns home to Ramallah to film witness accounts of the 1948 Nakba - not only explores the events of that tumultuous era, but places them in context with the uncertainty and tension of present-day Palestine. Over the course of a single day and night, M's solipsistic existence is shaken when his nephew kills a man in Nazareth, placing the entire family at risk of reprisals. The film is a quietly witty, complex and occasionally surreal depiction of an exile's relationship with Palestine.
Dubai International Film Festival (Muhr Arab Awards - Best Film)
Tuesday, October 5th at 9:00pm Directed by Dima Hamdan in 2009Film length: 15 min. Country: Palestine, United Kingdom
Canadian Premiere
London December 27th 2008. It's the first day of Operation Cast Lead on the Gaza Strip. Mahmoud, a university student, is stuck to his laptop, watching a live news stream. He tries to call his mother who lives in the Gaza Strip, but all lines are cut off. He agrees to take part in a radio programme to discuss the situation in Gaza, but the producer tells him he must switch off his mobile for the next 30 minutes.
Cannes (2009), Jordan Short Film Festival (2009) International Euro Arab Film Festival
One Of
Tuesday, October 5th at 9:00pm Directed by Emad Badwan in 2009Film length: 4 min. Country: Palestine North American Premiere One Of reveals the shooting of an emergency medical worker on January 7th, 2009 during the period which Israel declared a ‘cease-fire’ period from the 2008/9 attacks on Gaza. The medics were subject to no less than 15 shots while they attempted to evacuate the body of a man already sniped by Israeli soldiers. One Of poses the question: how would you feel if your loved one died because ambulances were prevented from reaching the wounded?
AISHEEN (Still Alive in Gaza)
Tuesday, October 5th at 9:00pm Directed by Nicolas Wadimoff in 2010Film length: 85 min. Country: Qatar, Switzerland Shot a few weeks after the end of Israel’s January 2009 offensive, this sensitively crafted doc captures the human suffering and devastation wrought on Gaza’s Palestinian residents as they struggle daily to survive. “Where is the ghost town?” asks the little boy to the theme park attendant. “It's there, right there. But it has been bombed. Do you want to see it?” With these words, Aisheen begins. The film is a compelling, impressionistic journey through a devastated Gaza after the war. And the ghost town? Gaza is the ghost town. Clowns trying to make children forget the bombing with balloons and make-up; a beached whale “as big as a building” picked clean in a matter of hours by hungry residents; a scrawny stuffed lion hanging limply in a zoo cage—these surreal scenes convey the absurdity of a nation living on the brink, seemingly forever.
International Berlin Film Festival 2010, Ecumenical prize of the jury. International Nyon Documentary Film Festival 2010, Award Buyens/Chagoll and a special mention of the Youth Jury. Screened at HotDocs (2010)

Wednesday, October 6th

No Way Through
Wednesday, October 6th at 7:00pm Directed by Alexandra Monro and Sheila Menon in 2009Film length: 7 min. Country: United Kingdom
Toronto Premiere
Imagine if London was controlled by the military and you had to go through specific checkpoints to go to school, go to work, visit your family or go to the hospital. No Way Through brings the shocking reality of Palestinian life in the West Bank uncomfortably close to home.
Best Short Film at Tongues on Fire Film Festival 2010 UK 2009; Ctrl Alt Shift Film Competition Winner
Fix ME
Wednesday, October 6th at 7:00pm Directed by Raed Andoni in 2009Film length: 98 min. Country: Palestine, France, Switzerland
Canadian Premiere
Raed Andoni has a tension headache - one that has lasted generations and isn't going to end soon. That's because Andoni is a Palestinian living in the Ramallah, where the prospects for a stress-free life are elusive. Fix ME, Andoni's latest documentary, follows him through 20 therapy sessions as he tries to cure his unwelcome condition. The internal terrain of displacement and alienation that is revealed to his therapist and through his daily encounters with friends and family mimics the lived reality of thousands of Palestinians who are themselves displaced from their history and homeland.
Sundance Film Festival (2010) Dubai International Film Festival (2009)
In Israel’s Custody
Wednesday, October 6th at 9:00pm Directed by Radwan Duha in 2009Film length: 14 min. Country: Israel The Muslim cemetery Maaman Allah, is located in West Jerusalem. Part of the cemetery was turned into a parking lot and now the Museum of Tolerance is being constructed upon this sensitive site. Muhammad al-Dajani, an 82-year-old Palestinian, visits the cemetery and tells us about members of his family who have been buried there since the beginning of the 20th century. This film is a part of the "Jerusalem Moments 2009" Project: seven documentary short films by seven young Palestinian and Israeli directors, reflecting the complexity of life in Jerusalem, in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Port of Memory
Wednesday, October 6th at 9:00pm Directed by Kamal Aljafari in 2009Film length: 63 min. Country: Palestine, United Arab Emirates/Germany/France The emptying of Jaffa, a thriving urban and economic port city in pre-1948 Palestine, of its indigenous residents, is a story rarely told. Aljafari’s film follows his family after they receive an order to evacuate their home in Ajami, Jaffa’s once-wealthy sea-front neighbourhood. Their lives and those of the other residents are thrown into disarray because they don’t have the means to fight back. Radically poetic, Port of Memory is a reflection on the absurdity of being at once absent and present, blending the mundane gestures of everyday life and collective memory. Traveling from the subjective to the objective, the film captures the essence of being Palestinian in Israel, as well as under occupation in the West Bank and Gaza.
Screened at Images Festival (2010); Middle East International Film Festival (2009) Arab Film Festival (2010)

Thursday, October 7th

Nine to Five
Thursday, October 7th at 7:00pm Directed by Daniel Gal in 2009Film length: 17 min. Country: Israel A night time journey with high walls, rope-climbing, barbed-wire fences, fear of arrest, and even a mortal threat - these are some of the obstacles facing Palestinians who work illegally inside Israel. The film follows a group of Palestinian construction workers trying to reach their workplaces in Har Homa, which is being built in East Jerusalem as a Jewish enclave amid Palestinians lands and neighbourhoods. This film is a part of the "Jerusalem Moments 2009" Project: seven documentary short films by seven young Palestinian and Israeli directors, reflecting the complexity of life in Jerusalem, in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
JAFFA Poster OKsmall
Jaffa, The Orange’s Clockwork
Thursday, October 7th at 7:00pm Directed by Eyal Sivan in 2009Film length: 86 min. Country: France, Belgium, Germany, Israel Through photography and cinema, poetry, paintings, workers of the citruses’ industry and historians, memory and present mythologies, the film shows how Palestinians and Israelis cross and combine.
International Jury’s Prize, Filmmaker Milan (2009); Young Jury Special Mention Filmmaker Milan Best editing prize; Soleluna – International documentary film festival on Islam and the Mediterranean, Palermo, Italy 2010
Ghetto Town
Thursday, October 7th at 9:00pm Directed by Amber Fares and Avi Goldstein in 2009Film length: 11 m. Country: Isreal The Shu'fat refugee camp lies on the edge of Jerusalem. Carrying blue Jerusalem IDs but now separated from the city by the wall and a checkpoint, residents of the camp find themselves caught between Jerusalem and the West Bank. Deprived of civil services, the camp has become an over-crowded no-man's land plagued by garbage, drugs, and violence. Out of the daily struggle for survival and identity rises G-Town, a young rap group bringing voice to life in the camp and defining the Jerusalem style of Palestinian hip hop. This film is a part of the "Jerusalem Moments 2009" Project: seven documentary short films by seven young Palestinian and Israeli directors, reflecting the complexity of life in Jerusalem, in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
São Paulo International Film Festival (2009) Cape Winelands Film Festival (2010) SEE Festival (2009)
Thursday, October 7th at 9:00pm Directed by Yasmine Novak in 2009Film length: 11 m. Country: Isreal There are parallel universes in the city of Jerusalem. Running alongside ‘Egged’, the Israeli national bus system, are the green and white Palestinian public buses. They pick up people traveling through Palestinian neighbourhoods of East Jerusalem, and cross back and forth over the Green Line. As the buses traverse the city, they carry with them dreams from various worlds. Passengers ascend and descend, always on the go, living their lives amidst a complex of rules, walls, soldiers, and permits. Will they reach their destination? This film is a part of the "Jerusalem Moments 2009" Project: seven documentary short films by seven young Palestinian and Israeli directors, reflecting the complexity of life in Jerusalem, in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Sundance Film Festival (2010)
Shooting Muhammad
Thursday, October 7th at 9:00pm Directed by Francesco Cannito and Luca Cusani in 2009Film length: 50 m. Country: Italy
North American Premiere
Welcome to the vibrant, precarious world of Muhammad—a 21-year-old Palestinian refugee studying at an Israeli settlement. For Muhammad, being a Palestinian in an Israeli university means checkpoint after checkpoint – and never far away, the endless wall. It means no friends, no drinks after lessons and the constant threat of violence. That seems tough enough but the very act of going to university on an Israeli settlement divides him against himself. Muhammad’s challenging life spills out in this fast and vibrant narrative. Can he overcome the odds to find fame, fortune or will it just end in another wall?
Asiatica Film Mediale (2009); Amal EuroArab Film Festival (2010)

Friday, October 8th

End of September
Friday, October 8th at 7:00pm Directed by Sama Alshaibi and Ala' Younis in 2010Film length: 25 min. Country: Jordan Canadian Premiere End of September re-orients Palestinian history by linking the past, present, and fantastical future. Dalal, a female fada'i (freedom fighter) returns to Palestine in shifts of time. Challenged by the results of the end of Israeli occupation, Dalal journeys through the Holy Land in search of fellow feda'i Jad. Betrayed by her own history, Dalal's relives the re-produced and recycled injustices of the Palestinian plight.
Screened at Chicago Palestine Film Festival (2010)
M at D gate 2
Ken, Tov, Beseder
Friday, October 8th at 7:00pm Directed by b. h. Yael in 2010Film length: 4 min. Country: Canada International Premiere A Palestinian man in his garden in Jerusalem is called out through Jerusalem streets, past the Damascus gate, out past settlements and the wall. At times acquiescent, at times frustrated, soothing and insistent, he negotiates through three Hebrew words, “ken, tov, beseder” Yes, good, all right. But what negotiation is to be had?
Friday, October 8th at 7:00pm Directed by Julia Bacha in 2009Film length: 70 min. Country: Palestine / Israel / USA Budrus is an award-winning documentary film about a Palestinian community organizer, Ayed Morrar, who unites local Fatah and Hamas members along with Israeli supporters in an unarmed movement to save his village of Budrus from destruction by Israel’s Separation Wall. Success eludes them until his 15-year-old daughter, Iltezam, launches a women’s contingent that quickly moves to the front lines. Struggling side by side, father and daughter unleash an inspiring, yet little-known, movement in the Occupied Palestinian Territory that is still gaining ground today. In an action-filled documentary chronicling this movement from its infancy, Budrus shines a light on people who choose non-violence to confront a threat.
Panorama Audience Award Second Prize Berlin International Film Festival (2010); Special Jury Mention Tribeca Film Festival (2010); Audience Award San Francisco International Film Festival (2010)

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