Reza Farahmand, Iran, 2019, 88'
World Premiere
Thu. 15.8.2019, 11h00, La Sala
Fri. 16.8.2019, 18h30, L'altra Sala

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Reza Farahmand’s newest documentary begins with the statement “In the Name of God”. But there is hardly any sign of God in the empty war ruins we see. Like in last year’s Women with Gunpowder Earrings, where the filmmaker accompanied an Iraqi war reporter, he is again drawn to a bombed region. In his previous film, he remained at the border to Syria. This time, he immerses himself in this seemingly never-ending war and goes to Jarmuk, a suburb of Damascus, which has been the home of Palestinian refugees for decades. Jarmuk once had 150,000 inhabitants. Today, after a mass exodus caused by heavy fighting, the invasion of the IS and a famine, there are less than 200 according to unofficial information. The ten-year-old boy Malook is one of them. He dreams of becoming a singer. Together with his older sister Ghofran, he is planning to organise a concert with professional musicians. But for whom? viewers wonder, given the deserted streets.

To scrape money together for the concert, Malook and some friends pull the copper lines out of the walls of empty buildings that are riddled with bullets and rockets. In one of the most moving scenes, the children write apologies for their theft on the walls, should the people who have fled ever return. A spark of hope remains for the children and for us, too, as long as such acts and art - songs and wall paintings - survive.

Flavia Giorgetta