The 79th edition of the Venice Film Festival has unveiled its program, with a fascinating array of renowned directors and stars. And the festival’s tantalizing selection is not lacking in content from around the world, as films from North Africa and the Middle East are featured in several different sections. Here are 3 that caught our attention.
1 – For my country, by Rachid Hami
In competition in the Horizons category, Algerian-born filmmaker Rachid Hami presents his second feature film. For France tells the story of a young Algerian policeman who loses his life during an initiation ritual at the prestigious French military school of Saint-Cyr. Shot in part in Morocco, the film stars the excellent Karim Leklou, revealed in Romain Gavras’ Le monde est à toi, and who has since been seen in Bac Nord.
— La Biennale di Venezia (@la_Biennale) July 26, 2022
2 – Nezouh, by Soudade Kaadan
Nezouh is the second feature film by Syrian filmmaker Soudade Kaadan, already awarded a Luigi De Laurentiis prize for best first film in Venice for The Day I Lost My Shadow. Set against the backdrop of the conflict in Damascus, the film follows a 14-year-old girl, Zeina, and her family, who are shocked when a bomb tears through the roof of their building.
3 – The Hanging Gardens, by Ahmed Yassin Al Daradji
This is the first feature film by Iraqi director Ahmed Yassin Al Daradji. Already known to moviegoers thanks to his award-winning short film entitled Children of God, he makes his comeback in the glamour of festivals with a new proposal called The Hanging Gardens, which tells the story of a 12-year-old boy who works as a garbage collector, who recovers an object of the most comical in a landfill in Baghdad … We do not tell you more, so as not to spoil the surprise.