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ARAB FILM FESTIVAL

September 29 - October 3 at the Trylon

Established in 2003, Mizna’s Twin Cities Arab Film Festival features local debuts of independent narrative, documentary, and experimental features and short films from more than 15 Arabic-speaking countries and their diasporas. The festival provides SWANA (Southwest Asian/North African) filmmakers support and exposure, builds the local SWANA community, and enables Minnesota audiences to enjoy the varied ways that SWANA artists represent themselves and their world through film.

Mizna requires proof of vaccination and masks at each screening during the TCAFF. Please reach out to michelle@mizna.org with any questions or concerns. Thank you!

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Past Films in this Series

Starts Wed, September 29

SOUAD/ سعاد +I AM AFRAID TO FORGET YOUR FACE

SOUAD (2021, DCP, 96m, Egypt/Tunisia/Germany, Arabic with English subtitles) dir Ayten Amin w/Bassant Ahmed, Basmala Elghaiesh, Hussein Ghanem. Narrative feature. Zagazig, a small city on the Nile Delta in Egypt. Today. Souad, a 19-year-old woman, leads a double life. She is conservative and veiled among her family and society, but also obsessed with her image on social media, where she has several secret virtual relationships with men. She lies about her personal life and fantasizes about the life she most…

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Starts Thu, September 30

AL MOMIA (THE NIGHT OF COUNTING THE YEARS) + SIROCCO

AL MOMIA (THE NIGHT OF COUNTING THE YEARS) (1969, DCP, 102m, Arabic w/English subtitles) dir Shadi Abdel Salam w/Ahmed Marai, Ahmad Hegazi, Nadia Lufti. “When we choose to restore a film, we give it a value that it doesn't otherwise have; we make a claim about the historical significance of its images, and we decide that audiences should have access to them for the foreseeable future. I'm thrilled that Cinema Ritravato and the World Cinema Project work to revive classic…

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Starts Fri, October 1

AS ABOVE, SO BELOW/ كما في السماء، كذلك على الأرض + MOONSCAPE

AS ABOVE, SO  BELOW (2020, DCP, 70m, Lebanon, Arabic with English subtitles) dir Sarah Francis. Documentary feature. A group of people roam in a bare landscape around a set of swings as their only settlement, as if mapping, exploring, reorganizing the open territory they are in. As they move, changes in soundscapes make them virtually cross geographies. In the sky, a moon-like satellite roves above their heads, following them like an omen. The moon, once symbolizing cyclical times, myths, and…

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Starts Fri, October 1

TRANCES

(1981, DCP, 88m, Morocco, Arabic with English subtitles) dir Ahmed El Maanouni. Documentary feature. The groundbreaking Moroccan band Nass El Ghiwane is the dynamic subject of this captivating, one-of-a-kind documentary by Ahmed El Maanouni, who filmed the four musicians during a series of electrifying live performances in Tunisia, Morocco, and France; on the streets of Casablanca; and in intimate conversations. Storytellers through song and traditional instruments, and with connections to political theater, the band became a local phenomenon and an…

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Starts Sat, October 2

OUR MEMORY BELONGS TO US / لنا ذاكرتنا

(2021, DCP, 90m, Syrian Arab Republic/Denmark/France/ Palestine, Arabic with English subtitles) dir Rami Farah. Documentary. Nearly 10 years after the beginning of the Syrian revolution, three Syrian activists––Yadan, Odai and Rani––reunite on a theatre stage in Paris. Through life-size projections onto a big screen, Syrian director Rami Farah confronts the three men with footage, some of it their own, depicting events that changed their destinies forever. Watching the brutal footage together, they reflect on their personal journeys, revive their collective…

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Starts Sat, October 2

MOSS AGATE + BELLYDANCE VOGUE

MOSS AGATE (2020, DCP, 68m, Lebanon, Arabic with French and English subtitles) dir Sélim Mourad w/Tamara Saade, François Yazbek, Elie Boudjok. Hybrid documentary. Beirut, summer 2019. The filmmaker experiences a descent into the abyss. His health is at stake and his film community is falling apart. His actress friend Tamara is the last one to leave. After his death, Tamara meets François, a man with whom she falls in love, but memories of the past keep coming back to her.…

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Starts Sat, October 2

ABOUT SOME MEANINGLESS EVENTS / DE QUELQUES ÉVÈNEMENTS SANS SIGNIFICATION

(1974, DCP, 76m, Morocco, Arabic and French with English subtitles) dir Mostafa Derkaoui. Hybrid documentary feature. First screened in Paris in 1975, the film was immediately banned, censored, and pulled from exhibition and export. In 2016, Filmoteca de Catalunya found a negative print in their archives and restored the film for circulation to audiences across the world. First screened in Paris in 1975, the film was immediately banned, censored, and pulled from exhibition and export. In 2016, Filmoteca de Catalunya…

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Starts Sat, October 2

ZANKA CONTACT

(2020, DCP, 115m, Morocco/France/Belgium, Arabic with English subtitles) dir Ismaël El Iraki w/Khansa Batma, Ahmed Hammoud, Saïd Bey. Narrative Feature. In hellish Casablanca a car-crash sets ablaze a burning, passionate love story between has-been rocker Larsen and the streetwise Rajae. The only hope for their blooming romance is to skip this ferocious town. Is there a way out of this crazy Moroccan underworld with its menagerie of sadistic cops, venomous snakes, metal concerts and shotgun-wielding modern-day Calamity Janes? For these…

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Starts Sun, October 3

BEFORE THE DYING OF THE LIGHT

(2020, DCP, 70m, Morocco/France, Arabic with English subtitles) dir Ali Essafi. Documentary feature. This glittering collage of posters, magazine covers, archival footage, jazz music, and cartoons takes you back to the art scene of 1970s Morocco, viewed from the perspective of the artists and actors themselves. Many of them were to end up in prison or disappear without a trace. The story revolves around a Moroccan independent film from 1974, About Some Meaningless Events by Mostafa Derkaoui, where a group…

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Starts Sun, October 3

200 METERS + GIVE UP THE GHOST

200 METERS (2020, DCP, 96m, Palestine/Jordan/Qatar, Arabic, English, and Hebrew with English subtitles) dir Ameen Nayfeh w/Ali Suliman, Lana Zreik, Samia Bakri. Narrative feature. Mustafa and his wife Salwa live 200 meters apart in villages separated by the Israeli border wall. One day he gets a call every parent dreads: his son has been injured in an accident. Rushing to cross the Israeli checkpoint, Mustafa is denied on a technicality. But a father’s love won’t give up and he will…

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