Endless violence, impoverished villages and scenes of despondency: These dramatized images are a defining part of the global image mainstream media has created about Palestine. These representations are hugely detrimental to the growth, determination and purposefulness that stems from the Palestinian people, both in and out of the Diaspora. A pop-up film series is making it’s debut today, and runs until January 25, in Dubai and Sharjah, that seeks to shed those stereotypes and tell the authentic, shrouded stories about Palestinian people.
The festival organizers Nadia, Noora, Dana and Nermeen, understand that for many, Palestine encompasses a whole array of feelings. Feelings of nostalgia, of heartache, of longing for a land, of plates of maqloubeh, of olive harvests, of love. Allowing viewers to synthetically travel to the many sights of Palestine, the festival offers a view different viewpoints and stories that many times, slip under the radar. Two of the seven films will include Q&A sessions with the directors, producers and actors.
Including the critically acclaimed My Love Awaits Me by the Sea and Open Bethlehem, a documentary by Leila Sansour released in 2014 showcasing Bethlehem in a way it’s often not seen behind the camera, the festival offers a few different genres and stories to sink your teeth into.
For more information: For a full list of the screenings, visit Reel Palestine’s official site, and like their page on Facebook. To follow updates about the festival, use the hashtag #ReelPalestine. The event was supported by the Welfare Association for Youth (WAY) and Palestine Film Foundation.