One evening, a married young singer Zoha meets the French lawyer Mathieu in a night club in Beirut. Mathieu will become suspected of spying, while Zoha is trying to flee from her husband. ... See full summary »
Fadi Abi Samra
Late in the 1980s it seems like the Lebanese conflict will never end. Khalil returns to Beirut after many years. Ten years earlier, during a battle, he took advantage of the confusion and pretended he was dead.
Just after telephone communication is restored between the warring East and West sides of Beirut, two old college lovers, one Christian, the other Shiite, whose efforts to meet have ... See full summary »
Haithem el Amine,
Lina, a young girl in war-torn Beirut, finds an ally and friend in Sihan, her domineering aunt's maid. Sihan shows Lina what her life could be like, but tests the girl's limits when she asks her to help plot her escape from the city.
a multidimensional opus for those who know how to use their gaze
When this film was shown to Lebanese audiences, it created a turmoil. Some thought it had hit just the right mood, others thought it played all the wrong notes. in all cases, it did seem to hit nerves, the right ones and the wrong ones. It must be said that this is a film that requires you to go along with it, not to bring your own expectations into it. It does bring out a very particular vision of that bewildering city that is Beirut. It is the director's vision, but it does in my opinion grasp an absolutely essential element: the city's tempo. The problem is, one has to ask if a city's tempo can exist outside the subjectivity of each citizen, and here, it is plain that the tempo in question is Salhab's. and mine. and many thirty-somethings of the Beiruti scene that Terra Incognita paints. Many things can be said about this film, but it is better to let the film be what it wants to be. It is important nonetheless to add that the film is incredibly rich visually and aurally, with structural experimentation reminiscent of many a master of intellectualist avant garde cinema of the 60s, as well as the more sensualist work of Takeshi Kitano (e.g. Hana-bi). The work Salhab put on the soundtrack is impressive to say the least, and the whole creates an eerily immersive experience of postwar Beirut. A film to watch with eyes and ears and mind wide open.
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