Opening: Thursday, Nov 3, 08.30 pm, Eiszeit Cinema, Zeughofstrasse 20, D-10997 Berlin (Kreuzberg)
Borhan Alaouié Beirut the Encounter, Belgium/Lebanon/Tunisia 1981, 105 min., Arab. with Engl. subtitles
The story of two people in the middle of the Lebanese Civil War: Zeina and Haidar met at university, but lost touch of each other due to the partition of the city. The film tells the story of the cautious renewal of their friendship and the unsuccessful attempts at arranging a meeting. “Beirut - the Encounter” draws an intimate image of every day war during the war, the attempts of people to lead a life beyond the bare necessities, despite the omnipresence of violence.
Friday, Nov 4, 06.00 pm, Babylon Cinema, Rosa Luxemburg Strasse 30, D-10178 Berlin (Mitte)
Maroun Baghdadi: Little Wars, Libanon/Frankreich 1982, 108 min., Arab. with Engl. subtitles
“Little Wars“ tells the story of three young Lebanese and their increasing disappointment during the Civil War. Souraya wants to leave the country, but is kept behind by her love for Talal. Talal falls into a maelstrom of violence and revenge when his father is kidnapped. Nabil, a photographer and friend develops into an inhuman cynic. The film was premiered at the Cannes International Film Festival in 1982.
Saturday, Nov 5, 04.00 pm, Babylon Cinema, Rosa Luxemburg Strasse 30, D-10178 Berlin (Mitte)
Maroun Baghdadi: The Land of Honey and Incense, Lebanon/France/Greece/Italy/Senegal 1987, 90 min, French
Baghdadi re-located the shooting for this film from Beirut to Athens and presents in his own words a “cry for help” for a city, once known for its openness and tolerance, now caught in a hell of hatred and revenge. The story of the abduction of a doctor from “Doctors Without Borders” is also an homage to those doctors who regardless of risks for their own security, travel to danger areas in order to help.
Saturday, Nov 5, 06.00 pm, Babylon Cinema, Rosa Luxemburg Strasse 30, D-10178 Berlin (Mitte)
Borhan Alaouié : Il ne suffit pas que Dieu soit avec les pauvres, France 1978, 70 min., Arab./French with French subtitles
The film portrays the Egyptian architect Hassan Fathy and his project to revive traditional, Egyptian mud brick architecture and offer an alternative to modernist, Western inspired architecture.
Sunday, Nov 6, 02.00 pm, Babylon Cinema, Rosa Luxemburg Strasse 30, D-10178 Berlin (Mitte)
Maroun Baghdadi: Beirut Oh Beirut, Lebanon 1975, 111 min., Arab. with Engl. subtitles
The film follows four young Lebanese in their efforts to cope with the increasing fragmentation of their society. “Beirut Oh Beirut” was shot just before the outbreak of the Civil War and seems almost prophetic in its exposure of those conflicts that finally let to the violence.
Sunday, Nov 6, 06.00 pm, Rollberg Cinema, Rollberg Straße 70, D-12049 Berlin (Neukölln)
Maroun Baghdadi: Out of Life, Lebanon/France 1991, 97 min., Arab/French with Eng. subtitles
The film recounts the plight of a French reporter who is abducted by militia men and held captive for an extended period of time. The fate of one man finds its parallel in the fate of an entire city who has been in the clutches of violence and brutality for 15 years.
Sunday, Nov 6, 08.30 pm, Rollberg Cinema, Rollberg Straße 70, D-12049 Berlin (Neukölln)
Borhan Alaouié: Kafr Qassim, Lebanon/Syria 1974, 100 min., Arab. with Engl. subtitles
The film portrays the Palestinian village Kafr Qassim and follows the events leading to the devastating massacre of 1956. 49 people were killed, as they were on their way back to their homes from their fields and businesses. “Kafr Qassim” received the Tani d’Or of the Carthage Film Festival in Tunisia in 1974.
Sunday, Nov 6, 10.00 pm, Babylon Cinema, Rosa Luxemburg Strasse 30, D-10178 Berlin (Mitte)
Borhan Alaouié: Khalass, Lebanon 2007, 98 min., Arab. with Engl. subtitles
”Khalass“ (”enough“ in Arabic) tells the story of two friends and their attempts to get to terms with their life situation and their broken dreams. They encounter various absurd situations and are forced to realize that many of their old beliefs turn out to be illusions.
Tuesday, Nov 8, 06.00 pm, Babylon Cinema, Rosa Luxemburg Strasse 30, D-10178 Berlin (Mitte)
Maroun Baghdadi: The Most Beautiful of Mothers, Lebanon/Canada 1978, 30 min., Arab. with Engl. subtitles / We Are All For the Fatherland, Libanon 1979, 80 min., Arab. with Engl. subtitles
In “The Most Beautiful of Mothers”, Baghdadi draws an intimate portrait of a number of young martyrs who fought for a socially just and equitable society at the beginning of the Civil War. The film maker visits their families and asks them about their memories of their sons. “We Are All For the Fatherland” takes the perspective of the rural population, the film documents the events in southern Lebanon after the Israeli invasion of 1978. Baghdadi lends a voice to those who were forgotten in the net of military strategy, political rhetoric and international diplomacy.
Wednesday, Nov 9, 10.00 pm, Babylon Cinema, Rosa Luxemburg Strasse 30, D-10178 Berlin (Mitte)
Borhan Alaouié: To You Wherever You Are, Lebanon 2001, 52 min., Arab. with Engl. subtitles / Lettres d’un temps d’exil, 1988, 52 min, Arab. with French subtitles
“To You Wherever You Are” presents a series of portraits of disillusioned, broken individuals who through their often absurd tales of their experiences during and after the War try to find a meaning with their present existences. In “Lettres d’un temps d’exil”, Alaouié presents the stories of four exiles from Beirut. Their only connection is the voice of the narrator and their situation of living in exile in Europe. Told with a subtle humor, the film sketches four highly individual portraits of people, whose lives have taken unexpected turns due to the madness of the Civil War.
Saturday, Nov 5, 02.00 pm, Babylon Cinema, Rosa Luxemburg Strasse 30, D-10178 Berlin (Mitte)
Souraya Baghdadi (lead actress in the film “Little Wars” by Maroun Baghdadi), Borhan Alaouié (film maker), Naja El-Achkar (founder of the organization „Nadi li-kul an-nas“), Charlotte Bank
At the beginning of the Lebanese Civil War, film makers like Maroun Baghdadi and Borhan Alaouié developed a new cinema that was radically different from earlier Lebanese film production. Film making was taken into the streets, work took place in the midst of the ruins of the urban landscape, often under conditions full of risks and dangers. Souraya Baghdadi and Borhan Alaouié talk about this novel way of film making, that blurred the boundaries between documentary and fiction and had a strong influence on the new Lebanese cinema that developed after the Civil War. Many films from this period are dispersed, in bad conditions of preservation or regarded as lost. The Beirut organization “Nadi li-kul an-nas“, which was founded by Naja El-Achkar works to restore and publish these films.