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The subject matter intrigued me a lot, and there were some big, relevant topics and themes that are important and current and always worth addressing. That was my main incentive for seeing 'In Between', as well as wanting to see as many films released in 2017 in my country as possible.
'In Between' is a great, interesting and more than worthwhile film that is worthy of more exposure. It's not one of my favourites certainly but as far as 2017 films go, it is one of the year's most under-appreciated and under-viewed. Read that the mayor of Umm al-Fahm forbade the film and that Maysaloun Hamoud had a fatwa issued against her, and it is a shame that she and the film have been treated that way and really they deserve much better. Subtlety is not a strong suit, with parts that are a touch too heavy-handed and contrived, like how the characters are written at times, which considering what is being talked about was always going to be a danger. Although it might be different for others, there wasn't anything that offended me or came over as questionable.
Having said that, the points that Hamoud makes in 'In Between' are well worth paying attention to. As said, 'In Between' addresses some big, sensitive topics and themes that are very much relevant anywhere, it deals with them in a way that provokes a lot of thought and intrigue. The story, with all the various aspects of the characters' lives (like Jewish neighbour relationships, reactions to a same sex relationship, resistance to suppression and underground culture), is nimbly handled with a lot of genuinely powerful moments.
Visually, 'In Between' is deftly and beautifully shot and edited, while Hamoud directs with adept control and the writing is full of good intentions and certainly makes an impact. The music adds a lot to the atmosphere and emotion.
Shaden Kanboura, Mouna Hawa, Sana Jammelieh and Henry Andrawes all give powerful performances, especially the truly affecting Kanboura.
All in all, may not be the easiest of watches but a great and very interesting film. 9/10 Bethany Cox
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