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21st Arab Film Festival

Shorts Programs

  1. Documentary Shorts

    70 mins
    A diverse assembly of short format documentary films that include spotlights on traditional Moroccan Sufi-inspired rock music and Amman's underground heavy metal scene, to a portrait of Palestinian youth living under occupation. Of note in this program are 4 films from #SupportYemen's documentary filmmaking workshop Comra (or "photographic dark room") that supports Yemeni filmmakers in tandem with the British Council. Heartfelt, relevant, and inspiring: our 2017 doc shorts program has something for everyone.

    In This Program: Bachelors of War, By the Medina, For the Medina, For a Loaf of Bread, Hide Your Metal, Home, Not Acting Anymore, Taxi

    Documentary Shorts

    Shattuck Cinemas
    October 22, 2017 1:00 pm


  2. Dramatic Vision

    88 mins
    A compilation of moody short narratives that demonstrate superbly crafted visual storytelling while engaging important socio-political realities of various parts of the Arab World and beyond. From a father who seeks to protect his only daughter from ISIS to an experimental rendering of Gaza's 2014 Shujaiya massacre: these films are captivating inasmuch as they touch upon pressing issues.

    In This Program: Abraham, Fireflies, Mare Nostrum, One Minute, Status Quo, Submarine

    Dramatic Vision

    New Parkway Theatre
    October 18, 2017 9:00 pm Buy Tickets

    Dramatic Vision

    Harmony Gold
    October 29, 2017 2:00 pm


  3. On the Edge of Narrative

    96 mins
    Three daring films from the Arab World that span across the Maghreb, the Levant, and the Gulf that push the boundaries of narrative storytelling towards more experimental considerations of visuality, performance, and genre. Moving through the registers of magical realism, absurdist psychodrama, and feminist monster movie horror, this selection will test the viewer's powers of perception while leaving room for shocking, even if, strange surprises.

    In This Program: After, Kindil, Shrimp

    On the Edge of Narrative

    Roxie Theatre
    October 17, 2017 9:00 pm

    On the Edge of Narrative

    New Parkway Theatre
    October 20, 2017 6:00 pm Buy Tickets


  4. Playful Ponderings

    79 mins
    From dating drama in Bahrain and an abandoned Qatari cinemaplex, to wacky Lebanese nuns and land mine explosions, this eclectic mix of 6 whimsical, albeit socially-concerned short format narrative works will take viewers on a journey of humor, self-discovery, and provocation.

    In This Program: Ahmad, The Candle, Five Boys and a Wheel, I Have Been Watching You All Along, Rattled, Under the Robes

    Playful Ponderings

    Empress Theatre
    October 19, 2017 7:00 pm

    Playful Ponderings

    Shattuck Cinemas
    October 22, 2017 2:30 pm

    Playful Ponderings

    Harmony Gold
    October 28, 2017 4:00 pm


  5. Refugee Stories: Migration, Displacement, Hope

    83 mins
    Far from a one-size-fits-all marking of "experience" so often depicted on Western media outlets when it comes to the plight of the refugee, this program of 5 powerful short documentaries spotlight the multitude of hues that should be considered when discussions of the refugee experience are had. From the Yarmouk and Ain El-Hilweh camps, to the streets of Berlin: Refugee Stories shows what it takes to hold onto one's dreams amidst devastating circumstances.

    In This Program: After the Spring, Here You Are, A Man Returned, The Pianist of Yarmouk, Through My Eyes: Hani’s Journey

    Refugee Stories: Migration, Displacement, Hope

    New Parkway Theatre
    October 18, 2017 6:30 pm Buy Tickets

    Refugee Stories: Migration, Displacement, Hope

    Pasadena City College
    October 26, 2017 7:00 pm


  6. Saudi Showcase

    These films represent the best of Saudi filmmaking, reflecting the creativity, culture, and humor of the Saudi people, and most notably: its filmmaker's penchant for crafting boundary-pushing work. AFF is looking forward to bringing these films to American audiences who are intrigued yet often misinformed by the media about Saudi life and values. These filmmakers represent the future of Saudi film and offer a look at its independent film scene American audiences would otherwise not be privy to.

    In This Program: Wasati, Yellow, Madayen

    Special: Saudi Showcase

    New Parkway Theatre
    October 20, 2017 8:05 pm Buy Tickets