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Arab Film Festival 2014

Los Angeles

November 7, 2014

Transit Game / Just Play

This film is not about occupation; it is not about the conflict; it is not about music. These are all elements of the story, but the film is about something else. It is about a group of men and women working with Al Kamandjati, a Palestinian Cultural Association conducting a program of music education in the West Bank. This picture is about them and their difficulties in transforming music into a means of freedom and liberation.

The Road to Paradise

Leila and her two children, Sarah and Bilal, have left their native land to settle in France, in search of a better life and Leila's husband, who is a refugee in England. Survival is tough and gets tougher, when she finds a lead to her husband.

Rock the Casbah

With a powerhouse Arab cast, Rock the Casbah is a family drama set one summer in Tangiers. A family comes together for three days, following the death of the family patriarch. Swapping their swimsuits for djellabas, emotions run particularly high, when the youngest daughter Sofia, arrives from New York. As the order once maintained by the deceased father breaks down and unravels, the women of the family are forced to face certain harsh truths.

November 8, 2014


A deep feeling of nostalgia takes hold of Ali following his mother’s death, causing him to slowly drift away from family life. Although Gabrielle senses her husband’s distress, she fails to console him. In an attempt to reconnect with his roots, Ali travels to Arwad, an island located off the Syrian coast. Leaving Montreal and his family behind, he is accompanied by Marie, his mistress, who is discovering the island for the first time. After an unexpected turn of events, the confrontation between Gabrielle and Marie will become inevitable.

Cinema Palestine

Cinema Palestine explores the life and work of multiple generations of Palestinian filmmakers. Based on in-depth interviews with artist living in the Middle East as well as North America and Europe, the film explores the emergence of a Palestinian narrative through film, the relevance of film to the national struggle and the relationship between art, personal experience and politics in one of the most contested landscapes in the world.

The United

A legendary Egyptian football coach is brought back from retirement by his former star player to train a team of pan-Arab misfits in Jordan to compete against France in order to secure funding for their football academy.
3:30 pm


Director Philippe Aractingi sees himself having to leave his motherland to settle elsewhere for the third time in his life. Gripped by the burning desire to tell his own children the past that is “not to be told,” Aractingi sets on a journey through Lebanon’s history to understand and pass on its lessons.


Benjamin is a child in war against the world. He has known violence and social care homes. One day, when his mother goes to prison, Benjamin learns he has a father. Now, he will go to live with this unknown man in the suburbs of Paris.

November 9, 2014

I Exist / Shebabs of Yarmouk

Boredom, idleness, discouragement, the possibility of exile. But also hope, dreams, ideals, and passion for art. That is what Salvatori-Sinz filmed in this first documentary essay, which captures the daily lives of Ala’a, Hassan, Samer, Tasneem and Waed, all of whom are in their early 20s. They are Shebabs, as third-generation Palestinian refugees born and raised in the Mukhayyam Yarmouk camp, on the outskirts of Damascus, Syria, are known.

In My Mother's Arms

Husham works tirelessly to build the hopes, dreams and prospects of the 32 children of war, under his care at a small orphanage in Baghdad’s most dangerous district. Against this threatening backdrop, with funds running desperately low, the bittersweet dramas of childhood play out.

A Stone's Throw from Prison

Growing up in the Occupied Palestinian Territory is not easy. When you leave home for school, your mother can't be sure of when you'll be back. Rami, Ahmed, Mohammed, three among thousands, this documentary is their story, but also that of courageous Israelis and Palestinians working to cut abuses, stop conflict and heal its consequences

The Dark Outside / Excuse my French

The film tells the story of Hany Abdallah Peter, a child whose life turns upside down after the death of his father and his mother's discovery of the huge debts they have to pay. He is forced to experience the huge gap between classes after moving from his old elite private school to a public one. Things get complicated for Hany after having to hide being a Christian surrendering to the assumptions of his classmates and teachers who didn't read his full name and mistook him for a Muslim.