From Cannes to Galway: Palestinian Film to Close Out the Galway Film Fleadh 2024
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From Cannes to Galway: Palestinian Film to Close Out the Galway Film Fleadh 2024

The 36th edition of the Galway Film Fleadh takes place from 9 – 14th July in the Town Hall Theatre and Pálás Cinema and in this year's programme the Country of Focus strand focuses on films from and about Palestine.

Cannes Directors’ Fortnight film, 'To A Land Unknown' will close the Galway Film Fleadh with its Irish premiere. The film follows two Palestinian cousins, Chatila and Reda who are seeking a way to reach Germany, they find themselves caught in an uncontrollable spiral. Described by Variety as “..a film crafted with tremendous empathy,” director Mahdi Fleife will attend the screening on July 14th.

Feature film, 'We No Longer Prefer Mountains', which screens on July 10th explores the particular political and social condition of the Druze minority in northern Palestine. Through open, one-to-one exchanges often spoken directly to the camera, the protagonists of the film share their lived experience of the policies that were implemented to divide them from the larger indigenous community. The film explores how the inner politics of the Druze have been reconfigured and reshaped since 1948. Director Inas Halabi will attend.

above: photo from We No Longer Prefer Mountains 

In 'The Teacher', a gripping feature debut from Oscar nominated director, Farah Nabulsi, a Palestinian school teacher played by award winning actor, Saleh Bakri, struggles to reconcile his life-threatening commitment to political resistance with his emotional support for one of his students and the chance of a new romantic relationship with a volunteer worker played by Imogen Poots. Simultaneously, an American couple played by Stanley Townsend and Andrea Irvine seek the return of their son who has been held hostage for three years. Screening on July 12th with director, Farah Nabulsi and cast in attendance.

above: photo from The Teacher

'No Other Land' which screens on 11th July was the Winner of the Audience Award at CPH:DOX and the Documentary Award and Panorama Audience Award for Best Documentary Film at Berlinale. Basel Adra, a young Palestinian activist from Masafer Yatta, has been fighting his community's mass expulsion by the Israeli occupation since childhood. Basel documents the gradual erasure of Masafer Yatta, as soldiers destroy the homes of families. He crosses paths with Yuval, an Israeli journalist who joins his struggle, and for over half a decade they fight against the expulsion while growing closer.

'Screwdriver' which screens on July 14th follows Ziad, who after 15 years of imprisonment, struggles to adjust to modern Palestinian life as the hero everyone hails him to be. Unable to distinguish reality from hallucination he unravels and drives himself back to where it all began.

above: photo from Screwdiver

Speaking about Palestine as Country of Focus at this year’s Fleadh, Director of Programming, Maeve McGrath explained that "...the quality of films underpinned the decision to showcase the work of film artists who bring the stories of Palestine to the screen. Additionally, in screening films made in, and about Palestine, we provide a space to bring these films to a larger audience and show support and solidarity with the Palestinian people."

Go to to book tickets or contact Town Hall Theatre box office on 091 569777.

The Galway Film Fleadh is supported by the Arts Council, Screen Ireland, Failte Ireland and Galway City Council.  

All photos courtesy of Galway Film Fleadh.

Feature image is from 'To A Land Unknown.'

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