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Minneapolis St. Paul Film Society Announces 2019 Arab Film Fest

Mizna will present the 14th Twin Cities Arab Film Festival September 26-29, 2019 at St. Anthony Main Theatre (on the MSP Film Society's Screen 3). Included will be more than thirty contemporary films from Palestine, Egypt, Lebanon, Qatar, Syria, Jordan, and the United Arab Emirates, as well as those from local Arab filmmakers.
Mizna recently announced the full schedule, and this year features an exciting lineup which includes the latest from Elia Suleiman, a spotlight on Sudan, a Tunisian horror film, local shorts, and visiting filmmakers.  Individual tickets, ticket packs and all-access passes are now available. View the full lineup and purchase tickets.

It Must Be Heaven

This year's opening film is It Must Be Heaven, award-winning director Elia Suleiman's comic saga exploring identity, nationality, and belonging. Playing himself, Elia Suleiman escapes from Palestine seeking an alternative homeland, only to find that Palestine is trailing behind him. Having received a Jury’s Special Mention Award at Cannes in June, this is one of its first screenings in North America. The film will screen again during the fest on 9/28. 

Join us for afterward for the opening party, featuring music by local Somali American DJ, Deka. Suggested donation of $10, RSVP HERE.

9/27 at 7pm: Western Arabs | Denmark / Netherlands + Visiting filmmaker

Filmmaker Omar Shargawi wants to understand his Palestinian father Munir better. Although Munir has lived in Denmark for years, he hasn't settled in this society. Shot over a period of twelve years, the film examines Omar's relationship with his father and the latter's influence on his son's identity.

The filmmaker will be in attendance for a post-film discussion. More Info.

9/27 at 9:15pm: Dreamaway + Manivelle | Egypt + Lebanon

Dreamaway follows a group of young workers in a luxury hotel compound, holding onto the town despite the lack of tourists. They lead a double life in the shadow of the shimmering hotel facades, as their families are unaware of the temptations of Sharm El-Sheikh. With no tourists, they are left in a vacuum, lacking opportunities and leading them to an existential quest for their identity. Manivelle, a short Lebanese mockumentary will screen before the feature length. More Info.

9/28 at 11am: Sudanese Shorts (Sudanese Film Group) | Sudan

In the seventies and eighties, a group of filmmakers issued a periodical named CINEMA and went on to found the Sudanese Film Group to seek more independence from the state and to maintain a Sudanese passion for cinema. Mizna will screen a selection of these films by Eltayeb Mahdi, Suliman Elnour, and Ibrahim Shaddad. More Info.

9/28 at 9:30pm: Dachra | Tunisia

Dachra, a contemporary Tunisian horror film, revolves around Yasmin, a journalism student, and her two classmates. They set out on a university assignment to solve the cold case of Mongia, a woman found mutilated twenty-five years ago, suspected of witchcraft. As they pursue their investigation, the three friends stumble into the archaic and ominous world of Dachra, an isolated countryside site filled with goats, silent women, mysterious drying meat, and steaming pots. More Info.

9/28 at 4 pm: Local(ish) Shorts | Midwest + Visiting Filmmakers

In this segment, we showcase films by and about Arab American artists and filmmakers who use cinema to tell their unique stories and to expand definitions of what it means to be visible while living in diaspora. These 5 short films challenge our ideas about cinematic narratives while expanding the frame of our local community. More Info.

9/29 at 7:30 pm: EXT. Night | Egypt                                                 

EXT. Night tackles class and gender disparities among three unlikely companions over the course of an evening, by exploring and exposing their Cairo with a rawness and grit unusual to both Egyptian films and “festival films.” This closing night film is the newest from Egyptian filmmaker Ahmad Abdulla. More info.  

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