Zanka Contact

Nadi Cinema, the Middle East Film Club, screens films from across the Middle East and often beyond. All films – classics, cult favorites, recent hits, comedies, tragedies, political thrillers, social commentaries, and romances, in black-white and living color – are subtitled in English. Screenings are free and open to the public. The series is hosted by Professor Joel Gordon and generally meets monthly on a Wednesday evening. Come see movies the way they were filmed to be screened – in a dark theater with friends and strangers. 

All screenings are free and open to the public and take place at 7 p.m. in the Hembree Auditorium, room 107E, in the Agricultural Food and Life Science building (AFLS), next to the Pat Walker Health Center on Maple Street. Metered parking is available nearby at the Garland Avenue Parking Garage 

Call (479) 575-4373 for more information on the Fall 2022 line-up. 

Nadi Cinema Fall 2022, Wednesdays at 7 pm

September 14 - Gaza Mon Amour (Tarzan and Arab Nasser, 2020) 

Is a rom-com possible for an aging fisherman in war-torn, besieged, blockaded Gaza? Issa has long pined for Siham; his fortunes may turn when he nets a phallic Greek statue. Arabic w/ English subtitles – 87 minutes 

October 12 - Zanka Contact (Ismael El Iraki, Morocco 2020) 

AKA Casablanca Burning: A has-been rock star returns to Casablanca and meets a girl with a golden voice, but past and present catch up for a wild ride. Think Tarantino + Tajine. Arabic w/ English subtitles – 120 minutes 

November 2 - Under the Moonlight (Reza Mirkarimi, Iran 2001) 

A young seminary student ‘loses’ his clerical garb. Seeking the young thief, he enters the Tehran underground and reexamines his life mission. 

Persian w/English subtitles – 100 minutes 

December 7 - Capernaum (Nadine Labaki, Lebanon 2018) 

Highly acclaimed story of undocumented street children, local and migrant, in Beirut, seeking justice through the courts and taking justice into their own hands. Arabic w/ English subtitles – 126 minutes 

Previous Seasons

March 31 Exterior/Night (Egypt 2018, directed by Ahmad Abdalla)

A frustrated film director facing personal and professional disappointment spends a raucous night with a taxi driver and a call girl. Reminiscent of Martin Scorsese’s After Hours, but with a sardonic glimpse at contemporary, post‐Arab Spring Egypt. (Arabic with English subtitles 98 minutes.)

Watch the trailer on YouTube (Arabic)

April 21 - Pure Coolness (Kyrgyzstan 2008, directed by Ernest Abdyjaparov)

Assema, a city girl, accompanies her boyfriend to his village to meet his parents, rejecting warnings about the prevalence of bride kidnapping in the countryside. Will the inevitable happen? (Kyrgyz with English subtitles, 95 minutes.)

Watch the trailer on YouTube

All film screenings are subtitled in English. Nadi Cinema is sponsored by the King Fahd Center for Middle East Studies in the Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences. Screenings are free and open to the campus community. 


Wednesday, January 22 - Ararat (Canada 2020, directed by Atom Egoyan)

From acclaimed director Egoyan, a look back at pre-genocide Armenian society through the eyes of a young man exploring his ethnic heritage, an art historian who lectures on Arshille Gorky, a film director trying to bring the catastrophe to the screen, and an actor cast as the lead villain (English and Armenian w/ English subtitles – 115 minutes)

Watch the trailer on YouTube (English)

Wednesday, February 5 - The Dupes (Syria 1973, directed by Tewfik Saleh)

From a master Egyptian director, this searing adaptation of Ghassan Kanafani’s celebrated novella, Men in the Sun, follows three Palestinians of different generations seeking to smuggle themselves from Iraq to Kuwait in search of a better life (Arabic w/ English subtitles – 107 minutes)

Watch the trailer on YouTube (Arabic)

Wednesday, March 4 - Living in Paradise (Algeria/France 1998, directed by Bourlem Guerdjou)

A family displaced by the ongoing Algerian Liberation struggles to get by in France in the early 1960s. An immigrant worker brings his family over and gets more than he bargained for (Arabic and French w/ English subtitles – 105 minutes)

Watch the trailer on YouTube (Arabic, French subtitles)

Wednesday, April 8 - West Beirut (Lebanon 1998, directed by Ziad Doueiri)

Teenage fun and games in Beirut with a home movie camera turn serious as Lebanon descends into civil war. The first film by the acclaimed director of The Insult (2017) and a prizewinner at Cannes (Arabic w/ English subtitles – 105 minutes)

Watch the trailer on YouTube (French)

Wednesday, April 29 - Son of Babylon (Iraq 2010, directed by Mohamed al-Daradji)

Weeks after the fall of Saddam Hussein, a young boy and his grandmother set out from Northern Iraq in search of his father, missing in action since the 1991 Gulf War. Selected as Iraq's official entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 83rd Academy Awards (Arabic w/ English subtitles – 90 minutes)

Watch the trailer on YouTube (English)

September 4 - Wajib/Obligation (Palestine 2017, directed by Annemarie Jacir)

A father and son deliver invitations to their daughter/sister’s wedding. Will the estranged mom fly in from abroad? A micro-study of family and feud starring Palestinian stars (and real father-son), Muhammad and Saleh Bakri (Arabic w/ English subtitles – 96 minutes)

Watch the trailer on YouTube

October 2 - Every Day is a Holiday/Kul Yom Eid (Lebanon 2009, directed by Dima El-Horr)

An Independence Day trip to visit prisoners goes awry, stranding a busload of women. We follow three as they make their way through a bleak countryside scarred by violence. A debut film, marked by stark realism with surreal splashes and starring the great Hiam Abbas (Arabic/French w/ English subtitles – 78 minutes)

Watch the trailer on YouTube

October 23 - As I Open My Eyes (Tunisia 2015, directed by Leyla Bouzid)

Tunis on the brink of revolution – Farah and her techno band push the boundaries of what is permissible in a police state. Are they courageous or naïve? Are her parents, once youthful rebels, pillars of support – or part of the problem? (Arabic w/ English subtitles – 122 minutes)

Watch the trailer on YouTube

November 6: One-Zero/Wahed-Sefr (Egypt 2009, directed by Kamla Abu Zekry)

Eight stories are woven together in one day, which culminates in Egypt’s Africa Cup victory over Cameroon. Egypt will rejoice, but is this only a brief interlude in a complex web of social, political and sexual oppression? (Arabic w/ English subtitles – 105 minutes)

Watch the trailer on YouTube

December 4: Good Morning Karachi (Pakistan 2013, directed by Sabiha Sumar)

A poor girl climbs the ladder of success in the modeling industry, but can she leave her background behind and navigate Pakistan’s culture wars? Based on a best-selling novel (Urdu w/ English subtitles – 96 minutes)

Watch the trailer on YouTube

January 23 - Theeb/Wolf (directed by Naji Abu Nowar, Jordan 2014)

In this ‘Bedouin western’ set during the waning days of the Ottoman Empire, a young nomad boy secretly accompanies a British officer on a journey through the desert. A highly regarded – and awarded – co-production starring non-professional actors. (Arabic with English subtitles, 100 minutes)

Watch the trailer on YouTube

February 13 - Sheikh Jackson (directed by Amir Salama, Egypt 2017)

In this ‘endearingly offbeat’ film, a young cleric has a crisis of faith – and identity – upon the death of his idol, Michael Jackson. (Arabic with English subtitles, 93 minutes)

Watch the trailer on YouTube

March 13 - Kosh ba Kosh/Odd and Even (directed by Bakhtyar Khudojnazarov, Tajikistan 1993)

A young woman returns home from Russia to learn she has been gambled away by her father. A love story set against the background of civil war (Russian and Tajik with English subtitles, 95 minutes)

April 10 - Wolf and Sheep (directed by Shahrbanoo Sadat, Afghanistan 2016)

A phantasmagoric depiction of life in remote mountain region of Afghanistan, mixing folk beliefs – and a mythical Kashmir Wolf – with a nuanced ethnography. Directed and scripted by the youngest woman ever selected for the Cannes Festival. (Dari with English subtitles, 86 minutes)

Watch the trailer on YouTube

May 1 - Le Challat de Tunis/The Blade of Tunis (directed by Kaouther Ben Hania, Tunisia 2013)

A ‘playful,’ ‘audacious’ and celebrated mockumentary based on the true story of a vigilante motorcyclist infamous for slashing the buttocks of women he deemed improperly dressed. (Arabic and French with English subtitles, 100 minutes)

Watch the trailer on Vimeo

August 29 – Café Setarah (Iran 2005)

Café Setarah anchors a modest Tehran neighborhood in which three women and their associated men struggle to find romance, financial independence or, for some, a way out (Farsi with English subtitles – 102 minutes)

September 19 – The Insult (Lebanon 2017)

An argument over a home renovation leads to blows; a subsequent legal case revives raw communal tensions that have survived Lebanon’s brutal 15‐year civil war. An Oscar nominee as Best Foreign Language Film (Arabic with English subtitles – 112 minutes)

Watch the trailer on YouTube

October 17 – Josh: Against the Grain (Pakistan 2012)

When her housemaid disappears during a trip to the village, Fatima ventures beyond her comfortable urban life and enters the dark world of feudal politics (Urdu with English subtitles – 104 minutes)

Watch the trailer on Vimeo

November 14 – Razzia (Morocco 2017)

Razzia interweaves the stories of 5 Moroccans across three decades in Casablanca, counterpoising his city to the famed Hollywood romance. (Arabic/French with English subtitles – 119 minutes)

Watch the trailer on IMDB

December 5 – Boats Out of Watermelon Rinds (Turkey 2004)

A love story of cinema: two teens growing up in a village restore an old projector and show snippets of discarded film stock. Based on the director’s personal experience and filmed in his village with an unprofessional cast (Turkish with English subtitles – 97 minutes)

January 31 - Eshtibak/Clash (Mohamed Diab, Egypt 2016)

 Set in the aftermath of the military coup of 2013 and shot entirely in the back of a police van in which pro- and anti-government demonstrators are collected, this explosive film – an opening feature at Cannes – depicts the descent of Egypt’s Arab Spring into a nightmare.  Arabic w/English subtitles (97 minutes)

Watch the trailer on YouTube

 February 28 - Under the Shadow (Babak Anvari, Iran 2016)

 A malevolent spirit haunts an apartment building in Tehran caught amidst the terrible bombings of the 1980s Iran-Iraq war.  Did little Dorsa – or her doll – become possessed?  Is this nightmare or reality? Persian w/English subtitles (84 minutes)

Watch the trailer on YouTube

 April 4 - Vizontele/Television (Yilmaz Erdogan, Turkey 2001)

 Television finally reaches a faraway village in eastern Turkey in 1974 in this tragi-comedy by popular director Erdogan that features an all-star cast. Will the villagers achieve connectivity and at what cost?  Turkish w/English subtitles (110 min)

Watch the trailer on YouTube

 May 2 - What a Wonderful World (Faouzi Bensaidi, Morocco 2006)

 A prostitute, a traffic cop, an assassin and a dark comedy-thriller about a doomed romance, all set in Casablanca – and by acclaimed Moroccan director Bensaidi.  Arabic-French w/English subtitles (94 min)

Watch the trailer on YouTube

January 25 - Free Men (Ismael Ferroukhi, France 2011)

Set in Nazi-occupied Paris, a tale of resistance and sanctuary centered on the Paris grand mosque, starring Tahar Rahim as a young Algerian one step ahead of the law, and Mahmoud Shalaby as singing sensation Salim Halali, soon to be the Elvis of North Africa. French/Arabic with English subtitles (99 minutes)

Watch the trailer

February 22 – Vavien (Yagmar and Durul Taylan, Turkey 2009)

From Turkey’s Coen Brothers, a black comedy set in a small town on the Black Sea.  Unhappily married, hopelessly in debt and in love with a low class nightclub singer, Celal contrives a plan to steal his wife’s inheritance.  Turkish with English subtitles (100 minutes)

Watch the trailer

March 29 – Low Heights (Ebrahim Hatamikia, Iran 2002)

Desperate to change his life situation, Ghassem decides to take his family to the Gulf for work.  En route, he makes a bold decision to hijack the plane.  Negotiations ensue.  Starring Leila Khatemi and written by 2011 Oscar-winning director Asghar Farhadi (A Separation).  Farsi with English subtitles (115 min)

Watch the trailer

April 19 – Zinda Bhaag (Meenu Gaur and Farjad Nabi, Pakistan 2013)

Three friends dream of escaping dead-end lives in Lahore, but the pull of friends, lovers, and a local mafia lord (Indian star Naseer Uddin Shah) create barriers.  Light-hearted, with a poke at Lollywood, but ultimately dead serious, this was Pakistan’s nominee for a 201foreign language Oscar.  Urdu with English subtitles (120 min)

Watch the trailer

May 3 – Daratt/Dry Season (Mahamat-Saleh Haroun, Chad 2006)

A tale of revenge of Biblical proportions, filled with eloquent silences.  In the uneasy wake of the country’s decades-long civil war, a fatherless boy sets out to murder a childless man.  Commissioned to mark Mozart’s 250th birthday.  Arabic with English subtitles (95 minutes)

Watch the trailer

Sep 7: The Desert Ark (directed by Mohamed Chouikh, Algeria 1997)
A recasting of Romeo and Juliet set in the Algerian Desert. A forbidden inter‐clan romance threatens to destroy a tribal society. Can a mad Noah save them? Arabic w/English subtitles – 90 minutes

Sep 21: A Few Kilos of Dates for a Funeral (directed by Saman Salur, Iran 2006)
In this dark comedy from an award winning young director, three lonely men trapped in a village at the edge of nowhere dream of romance, each more impossible than the next. Farsi w/English subtitles – 76 minutes

Oct 12: Bethlehem (directed by Yuval Adler, Israel 2014)
A gripping “inside” look at the relationship between an Israeli undercover agent and a young Palestinian boy who has become his eyes and ears in the West Bank. Arabic & Hebrew w/English subtitles – 99 minutes

Oct 26: Hell’s Ground (directed by Omar Khan, Pakistan 2007)
A Halloween fright‐night special: A group of friends driving to a rock concert make a fateful wrong turn in search of a shortcut down a backcountry road. Urdu w/English subtitles – 77 minutes

Watch the trailer on YouTube

Nov 9: Timbuktu (directed by Abderrahmane Sissako, Mali 2014)
A rare, dispassionate and stunning look at a society living under ISIS, here the savannah of Mali, now facing new laws, traditions and restrictions. Nominated as best foreign language film. Arabic‐Berber‐French w/English subtitles – 96 minutes

Watch the trailer on YouTube

Nov 30: Fallen Angels Paradise (directed by Ossama Fawzi, Egypt 2000)
Based on story by famed Brazilian author Jorge Amado – a homeless man’s friends kidnap his corpse and take him on a last, riotous tour of their favorite Cairo haunts. Arabic w/English subtitles – 90 minutes

Feb. 3 – The new Spring 2016 season begins with Amreeka (USA 2009), directed by Cherien Dabis. Life in post‐9/11 suburban Chicago for a single mother and her teenage son, recent arrivals from Palestine: My Big Fat Palestinian Wedding? (English and Arabic w/English subtitles 96 minutes)

Feb. 17 – Bus #678 – overcrowded and an easy working site for pickpockets and gropers – what happens when one woman has had enough? Cairo 678 (Egypt 2010), directed by Muhammad Diab, took top prize in the 2010 Dubai International Film Festival. (Arabic w/English subtitles – 100 minutes)

Mar. 2 – The horse is a symbol of freedom in the countryside, but servitude in the sprawling Istanbul metropolis, where a father and son try to get by as cart peddlers. Ali Ozgenturk’s The Horse is a social realist classic and a timeless tale of hope and oppression (Turkish w/English subtitles – 116 minutes)

Apr. 6 - On the verge of getting married – finally – Noha has second thoughts and contacts an old lover in director Georges Hachem’s Stray Bullet (Lebanon 2010). It is 1976 with Lebanon on the verge of a 15‐year civil war. Starring Nadine Labaki (director of CaramelWhere Do We Go Now). (Arabic and French w/English subtitles 77 minutes)

Apr. 27 - In director Rashid Mashrawi’s Laila’s Birthday (Palestine 2008), a ‘dark urban comedy’ about life under Israeli occupation, Laila’s father (the great Mohammed Bakri), an ex‐judge turned cab driver, must navigate the streets of Ramallah before he can celebrate his daughter’s eight birthday. (Arabic w/English subtitles 71 minutes)

Iranian films have won numerous international awards, including the Oscar and Golden Globe, the Cannes Film Festival’s Golden Palm and Jury Prize, the Venice Film Festival’s Golden and Silver Lion, and the Berlinale’s Golden and Silver Bear.  These films approach personal as well as social and political themes, addressing war, revolution, colonial resistance, dictatorship, nationalism, modernization, ethnic strife, feminist struggle, divorce, the influence of communism and the West, and the enduring role of tradition and faith. The screenings will provide a unique opportunity to reflect on the changes in Iranian society and culture under the Pahlavi dynasty and the Islamic Republic. 

Sept. 2 – In his films after the Islamic Revolution, Dariush Mehrjui focuses on the issues of the middle-class Iranians. Leila, part of a trilogy dealing with the experience of Iranian women, is the devastating story of Leila and Reza, a happily married couple must confront Leila’s infertility and the pressure of an overbearing mother-in-law who insists her son must have a son.

Sept. 16 –Winner of the Silver Bear at the Berlin Film Festival, directed by Sohrab Shahid Saless, Still Life portrays the routine simple life of an elderly railway crossing guard and his wife living in solitude at a remote rail junction, which is broken by his forced retirement.

Sept. 30 – From Abbas Kiarostami comes The Report (1977), a rare early film made before the Islamic Revolution, and his first film with an adult theme and professional actors. It follows a brash tax investigator with financial problems and troubles both at work and home.

Oct. 14 – In Nargess (1992) director Rakhshan Bani-Etemad tells the tragic story of a love triangle. Afagh, an aging thief who has lost her beauty, is on the verge of losing her young lover, Adel. When Adel meets the beautiful Nargess he decides to go straight, but honest work does not come easily and he decides to go back to the old life for one last job.

Oct. 21 – In Bahram Bayzaie’s Bashu, The Little Stranger, Bashu, a young boy from Khuzestan near the Persian Gulf, escapes to northern Iran by the Caspian Sea after witnessing the death of his family in the Iran-Iraq War.  His adoption by Na’i, a single mother whose husband is away, leads to many social, cultural, linguistic, and racial struggles.

Nov. 11 – From director Mohsen Makmalbaf comes Marriage of the Blessed (1989), the story of Haji - a shell-shocked young revolutionary war photographer severely traumatized by the war with Iraq. Back from the front, he's unable to adapt to civilian life. Despite family opposition, his fiancée stands by him as together they challenge both the authority of family and state to lead their own lives.

Nov. 18 – From Majid Majidi, best known for Academy Award nominee Children of Heaven (1997), comes Baran (2001).  In a building site in present-day Tehran, Lateef, a 17-year-old Turkish worker is irresistibly drawn to Rahmat, a young Afghan worker in a poignant romantic fable that combines a moving narrative of a Sufi love tale with a political critique of the harsh conditions of Afghan refugees in Iran.

Dec. 2 – Masud Kimiai’s The Protest (2000), pulled from the theaters after only a month, presents the changes in Iranian society and the struggles of a new generation of Iranian youth during Khatami’s first-term presidency (1997-2001).

Jan. 28 – The new Spring 2015 season begins with The Kite (Lebanon 2003), directed by Randa Chahal Sabagh.  Winner of the Silver Lion at Venice Film Festival, an absurdist tragicomedy about a Lebanese bride in love with an Israeli border guard.

Feb. 11 - Turkish boy meets Kurdish girl and falls hard despite his father’s objections in director Seren Yuce’s Cogunluk/Majority (Turkey 2010).   ‘A hard slap in the face,’ this film was widely viewed in Turkey and honored internationally.  ‘Love sometimes does not conquer all’ (Today’s Zaman).

Feb. 25 – A controversial and highly-awarded animated film by director Ari Folman, an Israeli combat veteran interviews fellow soldiers in Waltz with Bashir (Israel 2008), seeking roots of recurrent nightmares from the 1982 invasion of Lebanon and siege of Beirut.

Mar. 4 – A case of mistaken identity threatens national security when a Los Angeles expatriate lounge singer is invited to Iran as part of a cultural exchange.  Director Saman Moghaddam’s Maxx (Iran 2005) ishailed as one of the most popular Iranian films of the last decade.

Mar. 18 – An adaptation of Shakespeare’s Macbeth, director Vishal Bhardwaj’s Maqbool (India 2004) is setin Mumbai Muslim underworld and starring Irrfan Khan (Slumdog Millionaire, In Treatment, Life of Pi) in the title role.

Apr. 8 - Thelma and Louise Egyptian style, director Muhammad Khan’s Dreams of Hind and Camelia (Egypt 1989) is a strikingly realistic tale of two maids who decide they've had enough. 

Apr. 22 - Palestine's entry for the Academy Awards, set in the aftermath of the June 1967 war, director Annemarie Jacir’s When I Saw You (Palestine 2012) chronicles the efforts of a young Palestinian boy to cope with life in a refugee camp as the world around him is upended.

Aug. 27 – The new Fall 2014 season begins with Against the Government (Egypt 1992), directed by Atif al-Tayyib and staring the great Ahmad Zaki.  An unscrupulous lawyer decides to right things and challenge the government over negligence regarding a school bus accident.

Sept. 10 – From Hany Abu Asad, the director of the acclaimed Paradise Now and a finalist for last year’s Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film, comes Omar (Palestine 2013): the story of three young men growing up in Palestine, torn between the struggle for freedom and the rivalries of love – until an Israeli soldier is killed and Omar has to make a fateful decision.

Sept. 17 – Propaganda (Turkey 1999), directed by Sinan Cetin, is a comic masterpiece about what happens when international borders, dividing a town between Syria and Turkey, are suddenly enforced.  Based on a true story from 1948 and starring comic master Kemal Sunal in his last role.

Oct. 8 – From Asghar Farhadi, the Oscar winning director of A Separation, the psychological thriller About Elly (Iran 2009) examines the disappearance of the mysterious Elly from a weekend picnic to which she was invited, perhaps foolishly. 

Oct. 29 – The first ‘serious’ film to deal with Israel’s Arab-Jewish underclass, Nisim Dayan’s Light out of Nowhere (Israel 1973) is the story of a young boy growing up in the slums of Tel Aviv in the aftermath of Israel’s 1967 victory. 

Nov. 5 - In this ‘smart, pitch-black comedy’ (Rotten Tomatoes) which saw only limited release in the US, director Chris Morris’ Four Lions (England 2010) follows a group of hapless British jihadis set out to wreak havoc in their native country.   With clear antecedents in The Goon Squad and Monty Python, this film confronts faith and fanaticism with ‘touching humanity’ (Daily Telegraph).

Nov. 19 – Ibrahim el Batout directs a searing account of Egypt on the verge of revolution, as 3 lives – an activist, a journalist and a security officer – intersect in and around Tahrir Square in Winter of Discontent (Egypt 2012).

Dec. 3 – 20 years after being kidnapped during the Lebanese civil war, a hostage is released to wander the streets of Beirut seeking ties with the past and others who have suffered dislocation in director Bahij Hojeij’s Here Comes the Rain (Lebanon 2010).

Jan 15:  Microphone (Ahmad Abdalla, Egypt 2010)
Egypt on the verge of revolution viewed through the lenses of the skateboard/hip-hop scene in Alexandria, Egypt’s second city. Arabic w/English subtitles – 122 minutes

Jan 22:  Voice of My Father (Orhan Eskikoy/Zeynel Dogan, Turkey 2012) 
A young Kurdish man finds tapes of his father that reveal family secrets enmeshed in ethnic conflict and its aftermath.  Kurdish w/English subtitles – 84 minutes

Feb 5: No One Knows About Persian Cats (Bahman Ghobadi, Iran 2009)
Acclaimed film traces the story of two musicians recently freed from prison who set out to form a new band.  Farsi w/English subtitles – 106 minutes

Feb 26: The Open Door (Henri Barakat, Egypt 1963)
Powerful screen adaptation of the first great Arabic coming-of-age feminist novel, told against the backdrop of revolution – a classic.  Arabic w/English subtitles – 104 minutes

Mar 5: Ring of Fire (Bahij Hojeij, Lebanon 2004)
In a city ravaged by civil war a man searches for the woman he thinks he loves – or is it all in his imagination?  Based on a novel by acclaimed author Rachid al-Daif.  Arabic w/English subtitles – 90 minutes

Mar 19:  Lion of the Desert (Mustapha Akkad, Libya 1981)
Post-film discussion led by Libyan historian Dr. Ali Ahmida, University of New England.  Epic tale of the resistance against Fascist Italy led by Omar Mukhtar starring Anthony Quinn and Oliver Reed.  Directed by the Syrian-American Akkad and filmed on location.  173 minutes + intermission – English-language version

Apr 9:  Light out of Nowhere (Nisim Dayan, Israel 1973)
The first ‘serious’ film to deal with Israel’s Arab-Jewish underclass, the story of a young boy growing up in the slums of Tel Aviv in the aftermath of Israel’s 1967 victory.  Hebrew w/English subtitles – 89 minutes

Apr 16:  Kif al-Haal?/How’s it Going? (Isidore Musallim, Saudi Arabia 2006)
The first major production out of Saudi Arabia, the story of a family caught between tradition and change.  A comic-drama and cultural breakout. Arabic w/English subtitles – 97 minutes

Aug 28:  Cry of an Ant (dir. Sameh Abd al-Aziz, Egypt 2011)
“You’re like an ant so you should crawl close to the wall.”  Egypt on the verge of revolution, from satire to tragedy to high satire, this film was completed and reconceived after the uprising against Hosni Mubarak.  Arabic w/English subtitles – 107 minutes.

Sept 4: Ceasefire (dir. Tamineh Milani, Iran 2006)
The comic smash hit of 2006 (called the ‘Iranian Mr and Mrs Smith’) is a comic battle of the sexes.  Will newlywed bride Sayeh tame her husband, Golzar or will he tame her?  Persian w/English subtitles – 104 minutes.

Sept 18:  An Evening with Jack Shaheen – Reel Bad Arabs
Jack Shaheen is the leading media critic and chronicler of American popular representation of the Middle East, and joined Nadi Cinema for a special and discussion of his documentary, Reel Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People (2007).  60 minutes. 

Oct 2:  Five Minarets in New York (dir. Mahsun Kirmizigul, Turkey 2010)
Two Turkish agents fly to NY to extradite the emir of a jihadist terrorist bloc.  But there are dark secrets in this blockbuster action flick.  Co-starring Danny Glover and Gina Gershon.  Turkish w/English subtitles – 119 minutes.

Oct 16: The Fifth Heaven (dir. Dina Zvi Riklis, Israel 2011)
At the violent twilight of the Palestine mandate, an orphanage for girls becomes a microcosm for a society filled with broken dreams and audacious hopes.  Hebrew w/English subtitles – 103 minutes.

Oct 30:  Zaman: The Man from the Reeds (dir. Amer Alwan, Iraq 2003)
The first Iraqi film in 15 years and completed within days of the US invasion, Zaman, a blend of fiction and documentary traces a man’s life or death quest to and throughout Baghdad to find medicine for his wife. Arabic w/English subtitles –77 minutes.

Nov 20: Under the Moonlight (dir. Seyyid Reza Mir-Karimi, Iran 2001)
A young seminary student goes in search of his stolen clerical equipment and learns far more about human nature – and theology – than he did in his formal training.  Winner of the Critics’ Award at Cannes.  Persian w/English subtitles – 96 minutes.

Dec 4:  A New Day in Old Sanaa (dir. Bader Ben Hirsi, Yemen 2005)
A mystical romantic tale of a groom-to-be chasing an alluring spirit through the streets and alleys of medieval Sanaa, the first feature film made in Yemen screened at Cannes.  Arabic w/English subtitles – 86 minutes.

Jan 16: Where do we go Now? (Nadine Labaki, Lebanon 2011)
Labaki’s second film (after acclaimed Caramel) is a Lebanese Lysistrata with a few local twists.  How can the women in a mixed Muslim-Christian town keep their men – and sectarian tensions – in line? This film premiered at Cannes and went on to win multiple international festival awards.  Arabic w/ English subtitles – 110 minutes 

Jan 30:  The Lizard (Kamal Tabrizi, Iran 2004)
An escaped convict on the lam poses as a cleric to fool his pursuers.  This comic look at the religious establishment was a smash success – until the government stepped in and banned it.  Farsi w/ English subtitles – 97 minutes

Feb 13:  Umut (Yilmaz Guney, Turkey 1970)
A dark tale of greed and obsession and a masterpiece of Turkish neo-realism, Umut (Hope) marked the transition of Yilmiz Guney from action B-hero to auteur director.  He also stars as a poor cart driver who is led on a dubious quest for buried treasure by a holy man.  Turkish w/ English subtitles – 100 minutes

Feb 20:  Ali Zaoua: Prince of the Streets (Nabil Ayouch, Morocco 2000)
Based loosely on Mohamed Choukri’s classic autobiography, ‘For Bread Alone,’ this is a gritty look at the life of street children in Casablanca who somehow, through hope and hallucinogens, manage to persevere.  Arabic/French w/ English subtitles – 90 minutes

Mar 6: Seven Days/Shiva (Ronit and Shlomi Elkabetz, Israel 2008)
A Moroccan-Israeli family gathers under one roof for the seven-day mourning period to mark the passing of a brother.   Thrown together for a week, emotions come to the fore and the family faces disintegration.  Ronit Elkabetz (co-director, co-writer, star) is a recent winner of a French Culture award.    Hebrew w/ English subtitles – 103 minutes

Mar 27:  Dawn of the World (Abbas Fahdel, Iraq/France 2008)
An Iraqi veteran travels to the marsh lands of southern Iraq to pay respects to a fallen comrade’s family.  In the aftermath of war and failed rebellion, he finds devastation, fear and, just maybe, the girl of his dreams.  Starring the great Hiam Abbas and acclaimed newcomer Hafsia Herzi.  Arabic w/English subtitles – 95 minutes

Apr 3:  The Day I Became a Woman (Marziyeh Meshkini, Iran 2000)
Co-scripted by acclaimed director Mohsen Makhmalbaf (Meshkini’s husband) and shot (stunningly) in southern Iran, this film consists of three intertwined tales that encompass the life of a woman, starting with the day of seclusion.  Described as ‘Felliniesque’, the film was hugely successful.  Farsi w/ English subtitles – 78 minutes

Apr 10:  The Dove’s Lost Necklace (Nacer Khemir, Tunisia 1991)
The second film in Khemir’s ‘Desert Trilogy’ (Wanderers of the Desert 1984; Bab Aziz: The Prince who Contemplated his Soul 2005), this ‘fairy tale’ tells the magical story of a wandering calligrapher who leaves ‘golden age’ Andalusia in search of the missing fragments of a manuscript that he believes contain the secrets of love.  Classical Arabic w/ English subtitles – 90 minutes

Aug 22: Of Love and Eggs (Garin Nugroho, Indonesia 2004)
Set in and around a neighborhood mosque in working class Jakarta during Ramadan, the interwoven stories of family, faith and romantic love in this humorous yet poignant film are revealed through the eyes of three children. Best film at the 7th Festival of Asian Cinema, ‘an intimate drama’ (Time Out London). Indonesian w/English subtitles – 90 minutes

Sept 5: Salt from the Sea (Annemarie Jacir, Palestine 2008)
American-born Soraya returns to Palestine to collect her late father’s bank account. She meets Emad and the two take an illegal road trip through Israel in search of their roots. Official selection at London, Tribeca and Cannes festivals, and touted by Michael Moore as ‘brilliant, emotional, intense and fresh.’ Arabic/Hebrew w/English subtitles – 109 minutes

Sept 19: The Cow (Dariush Mehrjui, Iran 1968)
A world cinema classic and one of Iran’s best. A poor villager cherishes his cow more than anything in the world. When it dies, his friends conspire to hide the truth, but grief takes over. Smuggled out of Iran during the Shah’s reign, this film was later blessed by Ayatollah Khomeini for its sympathetic portrayal of Iran’s downtrodden. Persian w/English subtitles – 100 minutes

Oct 3: Fallen Angel’s Paradise (Ossama Fawzi, Egypt 2000)
In this controversial adaptation of a story by Brazilian author Jorge Amado, a once respectable man (Mahmoud Hemida) who has abandoned his family for the slums is taken on a last – posthumous – tour of all his favorite nighttime haunts. Arabic w/ English subtitles – 80 minutes

Oct 10: Three Monkeys (Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Turkey 2008)
Another masterpiece by Turkish auteur Ceylan, this one a film-noir whodunit about an employee who takes the blame for a hit-and-run accident committed by his boss. Turkish w/English subtitles – 109 minutes

Oct 24: Bosta (Philippe Aractingi, Lebanon 2007)
Seven old friends rent a rundown bus and set out to discover their small but culturally diverse – and fractured – country and to introduce a new folk-techno fusion sound, all in the aftermath of the 2006 war with Israel. An off-the-chart success in Lebanon and the Arab world. Arabic/French w/ English subtitles – 115 minutes

Nov 7: Rachida (Yasmina Bachir-Chouikh, Algeria 2002
The acclaimed feature debut, set during the 1990s Algerian civil war, is the winner of the FIPRESCI prize and Prix du Regard Original at Cannes and numerous other awards. An elementary school teacher in a popular quarter of Algiers struggles to avoid the armed struggle, even as militants, including former students, press her to take sides. Arabic/French w/English subtitles – 100 minutes

Nov 28: Scheherazade, Tell Me a Story (Yousry Nasrallah, Egypt 2009)
The ‘Arabian Nights’ in present-day Egypt, the film tells the story of a political talk show host who is pressured by her husband to address only social issues. Her new interest in women’s lives creates a powerful outlet for them to tell their stories in order to stay alive. Arabic w/ English subtitles – 134 minutes

Jan 25: Damascus with Love/Dimashq ma'a hobee (dir. Mohamad Abdulaziz, Syria 2010)
Determined to return to Damascus to find her lost love, Hala seems to discover the beauty, history, architecture, and magic that is hidden between the small neighborhoods of her beloved city.

Feb 8: City of Life (dir. Ali F. Mostafa, UAE 2009)
The lives of a spoiled Arab playboy, an Indian cabdriver and dancer,and a Romanian flight attendant collide in Dubai. (119 minutes)

Feb 22: Tales of Stubbornness (Turkey 2004)

Mar 7: Speak/Bol (dir. Shoaib Mansoor, Pakistan 2011)
The last wish of a female confict on death row is to tell her story to the media. (165 minutes)

Mar 28: Chaos, This Is/Heya fawda (dir. Youssef Chahine, Khaled Youssef, Egypt 2007)
Choubra is a cosmopolitan neighborhood of Cairo. Hatem, a shady police officer, handles it with an iron hand. Every single citizen fears and hates him. Only Nour, a young woman he lusts after, dares stand up to him. But Nour is secretly in love with Cherif, a brilliant and uncorrupted deputy prosecutor. Green with envy, Hatem tries to come between them. He wants Nour for himself and he makes her life a nightmare.

Apr 4: Women Without Men/Zanan-e bedun-e mardan (dir. Shirin Neshat, Shoja Azari, Germany/Austria/France 2009)
Against the tumultuous backdrop of Iran's 1953 CIA-backed coup d'état, the destinies of four women converge in a beautiful orchard garden, where they find independence, solace and companionship.

Apr 25: Under the Bombs/Sous les bombes (dir. Philippe Aractingi, Lebanon 2007)
In the wake of Israel's 2006 bombardment of Lebanon, a determined woman finds her way into the country convincing a taxi cab driver to take a risky journey around the scarred region in search of her sister and her son.

Aug 24: Falafel (dir. Michel Kammoun, Lebanon 2007)
Everything bad that can happen on the way to a party happens to young Tou on this nighttime trip though Beirut.

Sept 14: Chaos, This Is/Heya fawda (dir. Youssef Chahine, Khaled Youssef, Egypt 2007)
Choubra is a cosmopolitan neighborhood of Cairo. Hatem, a shady police officer, handles it with an iron hand. Every single citizen fears and hates him. Only Nour, a young woman he lusts after, dares stand up to him. But Nour is secretly in love with Cherif, a brilliant and uncorrupted deputy prosecutor. Green with envy, Hatem tries to come between them. He wants Nour for himself and he makes her life a nightmare.

Sept 21: Day Break/Dame sobh (dir. Hamid Rahmanian, Iran 2005)
Since the Islamic Revolution in Iran, capital punishment is carried out according to Islamic law, which gives the family of the victim ownership of the offender's life. Day Break - based on a compilation of true stories and shot inside Tehran's century-old prison - revolves around the imminent execution of Mansour, a man found guilty of murder. When the family of the victim repeatedly fails to show up on the appointed day, Mansour's execution is postponed again and again. Stuck inside the purgatory of his own mind, he waits as time passes on without him, caught between life and death, retribution and forgiveness.

Oct 5: Ajami (Israel 2009)
Five stories about the everyday life in Ajami, a religiously mixed community of Muslims and Christians in Tel Aviv.

Oct 12: The Land/Al-ard (dir. Youssef Chahine, Egypt 1969)
A small peasant village's struggles against the careless inroads of the large local landowner, The Land shows why political oppression does not necessarily lead to a sense of solidarity among the disinherited.

Nov 2: I Saw the Sun/Günesi Gördüm (dir. Mahsun Kirmizigül, Turkey 2009)
In the southeast region of Turkey, the Altun family lives in a small mountainside village plagued by a 25-year war, making their daily life a hellish struggle. As the war continues to intensify, one half of the family is forced to migrate west to the city of Istanbul, and the other to Norway.

Nov 9: The Time That Remains (dir. Elia Suleiman, Palestine 2009)
An examination of the creation of the state of Israel in 1948 through to the present day.

Nov 30: City of Life (dir. Ali F. Mostafa, UAE 2009)
The lives of a spoiled Arab playboy, an Indian cabdriver and dancer,and a Romanian flight attendant collide in Dubai. (119 minutes)

Jan 26: Private (dir. Saverio Costanzo, Italy 2004)
A Palestinian family is trapped inside a house commandeered by Israeli soldiers. (125 minutes)

Feb 9: In Nowhere Land/Hiçbiryerde (dir. Tayfun Pirselimoglu, Turkey 2004)
A woman desperately searches for her missing son.

Feb 23: Mr. and Mrs. Iyer (dir. Aparna Sen, India 2002)
During a bus journey, a devout Hindu Brahmin woman protects a Muslim man when communal rioting breaks out.

Mar 9: Women Without Men/Zanan-e bedun-e mardan (dir. Shirin Neshat, Shoja Azari, Germany/Austria/France 2009)
Against the tumultuous backdrop of Iran's 1953 CIA-backed coup d'état, the destinies of four women converge in a beautiful orchard garden, where they find independence, solace and companionship.

Mar 16: Beyond the Walls (dir. Uri Barbash, Israel 1984)
In Israel's Central Prison, the security officer is corrupt, supplying drugs and stirring the hatred between Jewish and Arab prisoners to his advantage. Uri, in for 12 years for armed robbery, and Issan, in for 50 years for PLO violence, command the respect of their cells. When the Arabs are framed for the murder of a Jewish prisoner and a young inmate commits suicide rather than lie about what happened, Uri and Issan form an unlikely partnership, leading the security block on a strike.

Apr 6: Free Time/Awqat faragh (dir. Mohammed Moustafa, Egypt 2006)
A group of middle class youths struggle with their experiences with drugs, sex and growing up. (94 minutes)

Apr 27: Offside (dir. Jafar Panahi, Iran 2006)
Female Iranian soccer fans masquerade as men to sneak into a Tehran stadium where women are banned. (88 minutes)

May 4: Bab'Aziz - The Prince who Contemplated his Soul (dir. Nacer Khemir, Tunisia 2005)
The story of a blind dervish named Bab'Aziz and his spirited granddaughter, Ishtar. Together they wander the desert in search of a great reunion of dervishes that takes place just once every thirty years. (98 minutes)

Aug 31: Lemon Tree (dir. Eran Riklis, Israel 2008)
The story of a Palestinian widow who must defend her lemontree field when a new Israeli Defense Minister moves next to her and threatens to have her lemon grove torn down. (106 min)

Sept 14: Garden Salad/Salad-e fasl (dir. Fereydoun Jeyrani, Iran 2005)
Leila, a pickpocket from a poor family, meets Hamid Doosdar, a businessman investor, on the Metro. Leila falls in love with Hamid and plots to remove the one obstacle to her happiness - Hamid's wife.

Sept 28: Yahsi Bati - The Ottoman Cowboys (dir. Ömer Faruk Sorak, Turkey 2010)
In 1881, two Ottoman Secret Agents travel to the USA, at the Sultan's request, to deliver a valuable diamond as a gift for the President.

Oct 5: Viva Algeria/Viva Laldjérie (dir. Nadir Moknèche, Algeria 2004)
This movie portrays three women living in today's Algeria between modern society and Islamic fundamentalism, self-determination and dependence.

Oct 19: Hasan and Marcus/Hassan wa Morcus (dir. Rami Imam, Egypt 2008)
The lives of a Muslim sheikh and a Christian priest are threatened by extremists on both sides.

Nov 9: Wife Number 13/Al zouga talattashar (dir. Fatin Abdel Wahab, Egypt 1961)
Murad is a notorious playboy who, by the time he meets Aida, has already been married 12 times. When Aida resists his attempts to seduce her, Murad decides to propose to her, with the intent of divorcing her afterward. One of Murad's ex-fiancees reveals his past to Aida, and prompts her to join forces with Murad's ex-wives to hatch a plot to force him to renounce his womanizing ways. (97 minutes)

Nov 30: Life according to Agfa/Ha-Chayim Al-Pi Agfa (dir. Assi Dayan, Israel 1993)
Various Israelis cross paths at an all-night Tel Aviv bar owned by two women.

Jan 20: Vodka Lemon (dir. Hiner Saleem, Armenia 2003)
Hamo lives in a small village in rural Armenia after the fall of the Soviet Union. As the village struggles to find its identity in the post-Soviet world, Hamo grieves for his wife, taking the bus to the cemetery every day to visit her grave. One day he meets Nina, a poor bar owner, who is at the cemetery visiting the resting place of her husband. Hamo and Nina gradually build a relationship founded on commiseration. (84 minutes)

Feb 3: Corrupted Hands/Dastha-ye aloode (dir. Sirus Alvand, Iran 2000)
An Iranian thief (Abolfazi Pour-Arab) and his gang pose as caterers to steal wedding gifts from wealthy clients.

Feb 17: Searching for a Scandal/Al-bahth an fadiha (dir. Niazi Mostafa, Egypt 1973)
Two lovers attempt to overcome family objections to their marriage by attempting to stage a scandal. (100 minutes)

Mar 3: Nina's Tragedies (dir. Savi Gabizon, Israel 2003)
The taboo relationship between young Nadav and his Aunt Nina transcends definition on its way to odd highs and lows.

Mar 17: What is Human Anyway/Insan nedir ki? (dir. Reha Erdem, Turkey 2004)
In an apartment building where neighbors, friends, and family are living in close quarters, three male protagonists encounter three phases of manhood in Turkish society.

Mar 31: Chronicle of a Disappearance (dir. Elia Suleiman, Israel-Palestine 1996)
Suleiman plays himself returning to Israel and the West Bank after a long absence which is followed by a series of barely connected vignettes and sketches, which are intended to convey the feelings of restlessness and uncertainly from Palestinian statelessness. Chronicle of a Disappearance was Suleiman's first feature film. It has received international critical acclaim and was shown at the 1996 Venice Film Festival, where it won the award for Best First Film Prize.

Apr 28: Shorts, T-Shirt and a Cap (dir. Said Hamed, Egypt 2000)

Sept 9: Hemlock/Shokaran (dir. Behruz Afkhami, Iran 2000)
Mahmoud, a middle-class family man, starts a relationship with Sima, a female nurse. When Sima gets pregnant, things get complicated.

Sept 23: The Bubble/Ha-Buah (dir. Eytan Fox, Israel 2006)
Ashraf, a Palestinian, meets Noam, an Israeli, at a checkpoint station. The pair begin a relationship, and Ashraff moves in illegally with Noam and Noam's roommates, Lulu and Yelli. The hip Tel Aviv neighborhood in which they live insulates them from the ongoing conflict between Arabs and Jews, but their protection cannot last forever. (117 minutes)

Oct 7: Respect/Izzat (dir. Ulrik Imtiaz Rolfsen, Norway 2005)
The three young immigrant boys Wasim, Riaz and Munawar are growing up in the east end of Oslo, Norway. Bored with school, they are attracted to the tough East Side Crew, which is run by the brothers Sadiq and Khalid. Petty theft soon develops in to drug dealing, violence and murder.

Oct 21: Thief and the Dogs/al-Liss wal-Kilab (dir. Kamal El Sheikh, Egypt 1962)
After four years in prison, the young thief Said Mahran is released from prison and seeks revenge against those who betrayed him. Based on the novel 'The Thief and the Dogs' by Naguib Mahfouz (120 minutes)

Oct 28: The Living Corpse/Zinda Laash (dir. Khwaja Sarfraz, Pakistan 1967)
Professor Tabini is experimenting on an elixir that he believes will beat death. When he tries it on himself, however, things don’t work out as planned and he dies. When his assistant finds him no longer among the living, she carries him down stairs and slaps him into the crypt in the basement. Unfortunately for her, he rises from the grave. (103 minutes)

Nov 4: Cholera Street/Agir Roman (dir. Mustafa Altioklar, Turkey 1997)
A young car mechanic, in the middle of an unlikely love affair, tries to protect the people in his poor neighborhood from a gangster who terrorizes the locals. (115 minutes)

Nov 18: The Terrorist (dir. Santosh Sivan, India 1998)
A young female terrorist goes on a suicide assassination mission, but her resolve to complete it is put to the test. (95 minutes)

Dec 2: One of the People/Wahed men el nas (dir. Ahmed Nader Galal, Egypt 2007)
Mahmoud is a poor but hard working parking attendant who lives a happy life with his father and wife Mona, who is pregnant in their first baby boy. Mahmoud's life changes in one night when he witnesses a murder while at work. (109 minutes)

Jan 14: Caramel/Sukkar Banat (dir. Nadine Labaki, Lebanon 2008)
A beauty salon in Beirut is a safe haven for five women in this Lebanese romantic comedy. Shop owner Layale consults her employees about a problematic affair, stylist Rima does not know how to handle her attraction to a female client, and seamstress Rose abandons her own ambitions to care for her family. With the support of their friends in their familiar salon, the women search for the answers to questions of life, love and happiness. (95 minutes)

Jan 28: Kilometre Zero (dir. Hiner Saleem, Iraq 2005)
Set during the Iraq-Iran war in the 80s, the Kurd electrician Ako is forced to leave his family and join the Iraqi army to fight in Basra against Iran.

Feb 11: Mud/Çamur (dir. Dervis Zaim, Turkey 2003)
Four 40-something friends are haunted by the violent past of a divided Cyprus.

Feb 25: The House on Chelouche Street/Ha-Bayit Berechov Chelouche (dir. Moshé Mizrahi, Israel 1973)
A fatherless family immigrates to Israel from Egypt during the British Mandate period. The film traces the hardships the family suffers in the politically unstable country. (110 minutes)

Mar 11: Half Moon/Niwemang (dir. Bahman Ghobadi, Iran 2006)
Years after the fall of Saddam Hussein, Kurdish singer Mamo intends to sing at a concert in Iraq. However, he lives in Iran and must travel to cross the border. (114 minutes)

Mar 25: His Excellency the Minister/Ma'ali al wazir (dir. Samir Seif, Egypt 2002)
Ra'fat Rostom becomes a minister by mistake, and has hilarious and strange about his power and corruption.

Apr 8: Sunday God Willing/Inch'Allah Dimanche (dir. Yamina Benguigui, France/Algeria 2001)
In Algeria, Zouina bids a tearful goodbye to her mother as she embarks on a voyage to France to be reunited with her husband. In a provincial town, she attempts to rear her three children under the withering glare of her mother-in-law, Aicha, who insists on a strict Muslim upbringing. Zouina does her best to assimilate, but is stuck between her traditionalist relatives and her xenophobic neighbors. She lives for Sundays, when she has a few hours of freedom. (98 minutes)

Apr 15: Rana's Wedding/Al-Quds fi Yawm Akhar (dir. Hany Abu-Assad, Palestine 2002)
One morning, spirited Rana, a Palestinian teenager living in Jerusalem, receives a startling note from her father, Abu Siad: She can either get married or emigrate with him to Egypt later that afternoon. (90 minutes)

Sept 10: The Sixth Day/Al-Yawm al-Sadis (dir. Youssef Chahine, Egypt 1986)
In 1947 Egypt, a married washerwoman who loves movies meets an organ grinder who wants to sing and dance.

Sept 24: Takva: A Man's Fear of God (dir. Ozer Kiziltan, Turkey 2006)
A promotion brings a Muslim's relationship with God into question. 96 minutes.

Oct 8: In the Name of God/Khuda Kay Liye (dir. Shoiab Mansoor, Pakistan 2007)
Two brothers, both artistes, experience major changes at the hands of Islamic fundamentalists and the U.S. Government; while their female cousin is abducted and forced to marry.

Oct 29: Hell's Ground/Zibakhana (dir. Omar Khan, Pakistan 2007)
On their way to a concert, a group of teens are diverted by a political protest, only to encounter a family of flesh-hungry psychopaths. 77 minutes.

Nov 5: The Band's Visit/Bikur Ha Tizmoret (dir. Eran Kolirin, Israel 2007)
A band comprised of members of the Egyptian police force head to Israel to play at the inaugural ceremony of an Arab arts center, only to find themselves lost in the wrong town. 87 minutes.

Nov 19: Mother of the Bride/Imm el aroussa (dir. Atef Salem, Egypt 1963)
Zeinab and Hussein are overworked parents who get little relief from the never ending demands of their seven mischievous children. When their eldest daughter, Ahlam, meets a dashing young man at a party, it's love at first sight and wedding plans must quickly be arranged. As preparations get underway, Zeinab and Hussein are soon overwhelmed by the elaborate and costly requests made by the groom's extravagant family. While tending to the needs of their other six children, Hussein and Zeinab must consider unconventional means to obtain the funds for a ceremony that the newlyweds will be proud of. Filled with entertaining turns by a colorful cast of characters, Mother of the Bride explores Egyptian courtship and marriage customs of the 1960s while relaying a delightfully entertaining story the entire family will enjoy.

Dec 3: The Yacoubian Building/Omaret yakobean (dir. Marwan Hamed, Egypt 2006)
Meditations on corruption, fundamentalism, prostitution, homosexuality, and drugs in central Cairo.

Jan 23: The Embassy in the Building/El-sefara fi El-Omara (dir. Amr Arafa, Egypt 2005)
After 25 years working overseas, Sherif Khairy, returns home to find out that the Israeli Embassy in Egypt took over the building he used to live in. 107 minutes.

Feb 6: Journey to the Sun/Günese Yolculuk (dir. Yesim Ustaoglu, Turkey 1999)
An unlikely friendship forms the basis of this powerful story of loyalty and courage. Mehmet, a cheerful young man from western Turkey, and Berzan, a Kurdish rebel in the underground, become fast friends while living in Istanbul. Mehmet is unjustly arrested, but the experience makes him aware of his country’s political realities. When the situation heats up, and Berzan is involved, Mehmet embarks on a sweeping, spiritual journey across Turkey to his friend’s Kurdish homeland.

Mar 5: Men at Work/Kargaran mashghoole karand (dir. Mani Haghighi, Iran 2006)
A political allegory on four middle-class guys who pile into their car for a ski weekend. A brief stop at a picturesque vista leads to their chance discovery of a prominent rock formation it seems would be oh so easy to tip over, but...

Mar 26: The Open Door/El bab el maftuh (dir. Henry Barakat, Egypt 1964)
A love story with political undertones. It tells the story of Layla, who struggles with the modern versus traditional dichotomy. She is the “modern woman—“ she wants to marry for love, but her parents insist on marrying her off to her cousin and force their views of how a woman should act on her. She resists and finds power in participating in anti-British demonstrations. It was not originally well-received, which Barakat believed was the result of a patriarchal society not ready to embrace the idea of women’s liberation.

Apr 9: Silent Waters/Khamosh Pani (dir. Sabiha Sumar, Pakistan 2003)
In Pakistan during the late 1970s, widowed Ayesha lives with her beloved son, Saleem. Saleem is a content but slightly bored teenage boy, until two radical Muslims move into his village. Like the rest of the villagers, at first Saleem keeps a distance -- and a sense of humor -- between himself and the fundamentalists. But over time the radicals begin to win him over, turning the teenager into someone completely unrecognizable to his devastated mother. 105 minutes.

Apr 23: Beaufort (dir. Joseph Cedar, Israel 2007)
The story of a group of Israeli soldiers stationed in an outpost prior to the withdrawal of forces of 2000. 131 minutes.

Aug 29: Head-On/Gegen die Wand (dir. Fatih Akin, Germany/Turkey 2004)
Cahit stumbles from bar to bar in Hamburg, Germany, lost in an alcoholic haze. The boozy Turkish immigrant crashes his car into a wall, which lands him in a mental institution. There he meets the suicidal Sibel. She convinces him to marry her, because otherwise her family will arrange her marriage to a Turkish man of their choosing. She proposes a deal to Cahit: She will cook and clean for him and they can see other people. Thus begins their strange romance. 121 minutes.

Sept 12: Love & Revenge (Youssef Wahby, Egypt 1944)
The story of an almost impossible love with an unexpected ending, a famous singer decides to leave the stage for love and he’s killed the next day. She swears vengeance and enthralls the main suspect.

Sept 26: The Nightingale's Prayer/Doa al karawan (H. Baracat, Egypt 1959)
This compelling tale of love and betrayal, set in the upper Egyptian countryside, follows the story of Amna as she plots her revenge on the engineer who destroyed her family's honor. 109 minutes.

Oct 10: 100% Arabic (dir. Mahmoud Zemmouri, France 1997)
Singers (Khaled, Cheb Mami) with Arabian roots contend with religious pressure on the outskirts of Paris. 85 minutes.

Oct 24: The Policeman/Ha-Shoter Azulai (Ephraim Kishon, Israel 1970)
Azulai is a policeman in Jaffa, whose incompetence is only matched by his soft-heartedness. His superiors want to send him to early retirement, but he would like to stay on the force, and the criminals of Jaffa don't want to see him leave either... 87 minutes.

Nov 7: Terrorism and Shish Kebab/Al-irhab wal kabab (Sherif Arafa, Egypt 1992)
A family man frustrated by the bureaucracies of the Egyptian public system as well as difficulties of life finds himself inadvertently accused of terrorism and decides to maintain this role holding down hostages in one of Egypt's most congested public service buildings. As some sympathise and join his cause, an antagonistic interior minister aims to defuse the situation. 105 minutes.

Nov 28: "Art" Film (M. Amin 2001)

Jan 25: America Abracadabra/Amrika Shika Bika (dir. Khairy Beshara, Egypt 1993)
A group of young people aspire to migrate to the United States for the jobs, get richer and live the American dream. They are duped by a con artist posing as a professor who leaves them in a forest in Romania.

Feb 8: Living in Paradise/Vivre au Paradis (dir. Bourdem Guerdjou, France/Algeria 1998)
Set in France in 1961-1962 during the Algerian War, Living In Paradise is a thought-provoking examination of the lives of North African immigrants trying to find a place in the social system of Western Europe. 105 minutes.

Mar 8: The Bandit/Eskiya (dir. Yavuz Turgul, Turkey 1996)
The epic adventures of the legendary Baran the Bandit following his release from prison. After serving 35 years, it is no surprise that the world has changed dramatically. Still, Baran can't help but be shocked to discover that his home village is now underwater thanks to the construction of a new dam. He then heads for Istanbul to get revenge upon his former best friend, the man who snitched on him and stole his lover Keje. Along the way, Baran teams up with Cumali, a tough young man who finds the thief's old-fashioned ways rather quaint. When Cumali gets into deep trouble with a crime boss, Baran adds another vengeful task to his roster. 121 minutes.

Apr 5: We are the Bus People/Ihna Bitu` al-Autobis (dir. Husayn Kamal, Egypt 1979)
Adel Imam and neighbour Abdel Moneim Madbouly are taken to a Police station after an altercation with a bus conductor. They are mistakenly arrested with a group of suspected terrorists and taken to a maximum security jail. 138 minutes

Apr 19: The Circle/Dayereh (dir. Jafar Panahi, Iran 2000)
Two women in Iran are given temporary leave from prison and attempt to flee to one of the women's hometown, but are caught by police. Meanwhile, one of their friends who has escaped jail is pregnant and in need of an abortion. A critical look at the treatment of women in Iran, The Circle tells the story of each of these women by shifting back and forth between them. The film has won several awards, including the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival in 2000, but it is banned in Iran. 90 min

May 3: The Milky Way/Darb al-Tabanat (dir. Ali Nassar, Israel/Palestine 1997)
1964, a village in Galilee. The Mukhtar collaborates with Israeli military rule. Someone is forging work permits, and the Mukhtar's son and a steady metalsmith, Mahmud, want to marry the same woman. These story lines cross when the village teacher is arrested and jailed for the forgeries, with the Mukhtar's approval. Mahmoud discovers who the real forger is and goes to the Mukhtar, whose son assumes Mahmud has come to denounce him. He sets off to burn down Mahmoud's house; tragedy follows. At Mahmud's side through his troubles is Mabruq, the village fool who, like others, particularly a young woman named Jamilah, still suffers from witnessing horrors in the 1948 war. 105 min

Sept 6: Borders/Al-Hudood (dir. Dureid Lahham, Syria 1982)
Sarcastic commentary on Arab unity and cooperation, Al-Hudood is the story of Abdel Wadood, a taxi driver who works across two countries, Gharbestan and Sharqestan. He loses his passport at the borders; hence, he is neither allowed back in his country nor allowed entry to the bordering country. He finds himself forced to camp at the borderline. There, he meets different classes of people and goes through a lot of adventures that reflect a lot of social and political irony. Wadood concludes that he is never a human in the Arab world without a passport.

Sept 20: The Syrian Bride/Arus Suriya (dir. Eran Riklis, Israel-Palestine 2004)
In Majdal Shams, the largest Druze village in Golan Heights on the Israeli-Syrian border, the Druze bride Mona is engaged to get married with Tallel, a television comedian that works in the Revolution Studios in Damascus, Syria. They have never met each other because of the occupation of the area by Israel since 1967; when Mona moves to Syria, she will lose her undefined nationality and will never be allowed to return home. Mona's father Hammed is a political activist pro-Syria that is on probation by the Israeli government. His older son Hatten married a Russian woman eight years ago and was banished from Majdal Shams by the religious leaders and his father. His brother Marwan is a wolf trader that lives in Italy. His sister Amal has two teenager daughters and has the intention to join the university, but her marriage with Amin is in crisis. When the family gathers for Mona's wedding, an insane bureaucracy jeopardizes the ceremony.

Oct 4: Propaganda (dir. Sinan Cetin, Turkey 1999)
Based on a true story set in 1948, customs officer Mehti is faced with the duty of formally setting up the border between Turkey and Syria, dividing his hometown. He is unaware of the pain that will eminently unfold, as families, languages, cultures and lovers are both ripped apart and clash head on in a village once united.

Oct 18: Desperado Square/Kikar Haholomot (dir. Benny Toraty, Israel 2001)
In a small village on the outskirts of Tel Aviv, Israel, the colorful locals gather for the one-year memorial of elder statesman Morris Mandabon. That night, his son, Nissim (Nir Levy), is visited by the old man's ghost, who urges him to re-open the family cinema that has been shut for 30 years. When Nissim makes it his mission, the village ripples with renewed life. Nissim's mother (Yona Elian), however, is angrily opposed to the planned opening-night film, the Bollywood classic "Sangam."

Nov 1: Kit Kat (dir. Daoud Abdel Sayed, Egypt 1991)
Sheikh Hosny is a blind man who lives with his old mother and his frustrated son in the Kit Kat neighborhood. His son Youssef dreams of going to Europe to find work, and has a relationship with a divorced woman named Fatima. Sheikh Hosny refuses to admit his handicap and dreams of riding a motorcycle like every sighted person, he also spends his nights smoking marijuana with the locals in order to forget his miseries after the loss of his wife and selling his father's house. He knows everything about his neighbors and their secrets and love affairs.

Nov 15: At the Door of the Minister/Ala bab el wazir (dir. Mohamed Abdel Aziz, Egypt 1982)
Kamal is a university student who is in love with Nora the daughter of a ruthless businessman who rejects him because he is poor and thus plots to keep him away from her. With the help of his friends they try to solve his problem especially after Kamal's father has been unjustly arrested for a crime he did not commit.

Nov 29: Chronicle of a Disappearance (dir. Elia Suleiman, Israel-Palestine 1996)
Suleiman plays himself returning to Israel and the West Bank after a long absence which is followed by a series of barely connected vignettes and sketches, which are intended to convey the feelings of restlessness and uncertainly from Palestinian statelessness. Chronicle of a Disappearance was Suleiman's first feature film. It has received international critical acclaim and was shown at the 1996 Venice Film Festival, where it won the award for Best First Film Prize.