Diff: 11 Enjaaz-supported films to be screened

Projects by regional directors have been supported by the festival’s post-production programme

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Tabloid

Eleven films supported by the Dubai International Film Festival’s (Diff) Enjaaz post-production programme will screen at the event this year, running from December 7 to 14 at Madinat Jumeirah.

The programme was established to help emerging regional talent finalise their works. More than 120 films have been supported by the programme since its launch.

“Enjaaz continues to be a crucial component to the Film Market and to Diff, as well as to the regional film industry,” said Masoud Amralla Al Ali, Diff’s artistic director. “As the region is witnessing an exciting increase in young budding filmmakers and established directors attempting to push cinematic boundaries by producing bold, compelling projects, we take great pride in being part of their journey to success regionally and globally.”

Here is the line-up:

‘Ali, The Goat and Ibrahim’ by Sherif Al Bendary

Ali falls in love with a goat, whom he names Nada. Recording studio employee Ibrahim starts to hear voices. Pushed by his mother, Ali visits a healer. At the clinic, Ali meets Ibrahim. The healer diagnoses Ali and Ibrahim as “cursed” and prescribes a solution to break the spell; they must throw three “magic” stones in Egypt’s three water bodies. Ali, Ibrahim and Nada then set off on an adventure in this tale of friendship and self-discovery.

‘Blessed Benefit’ by Mahmoud Massad

Ahmad, a construction worker, gets tangled up in an unfortunate business deal that sends him to prison. He meets fraudster Ebrahim who ruins his last hope to prove his innocence. Ahmad then realises that life in prison might be better than the one he has on the outside.

‘Flash’ by Hassan Kiyany

Masoud has returned home from his studies abroad with his girlfriend, Jessie, whom he introduces to his friends and family. On a road trip with friends, they attract unwanted attention from others, which leads to a series of mysterious events.

‘Honey, Rain and Dust’ by Nujoom Al Ganem

Aisha, Fatima and Gareeb are amongst the best known honey specialists in the northern parts of the UAE. Gareeb is also considered a beekeeper because he established a sanctuary at the top of the mountains, where he can control the surrounding environment. Fatima and Aisha prefer to roam the mountains to find natural honey. Involuntarily, the bees have become integral to the lives of Aisha, Fatima and Gareeb. But, for how long can the bees keep providing?

‘Still Burning’ by Georges Hachem

Andre, a Lebanese filmmaker living and working in France, unexpectedly meets Walid, a friend from his youth. During the Civil War, when they were in Beirut together, Andre and Walid were both driven by the same artistic vocation — cinema — and the same woman, Amira. Will their reunion revive repressed demons from their past?

‘Terra Firma’ by Laurent Ait Benalla

At a small commercial harbour in southern France, two sailors watch over ferries abandoned by their Moroccan owners. Young Syrians stop by to load their cattle. African traders prepare a convoy of second-hand vehicles. In this space that opens out to the sea, men, machines and animals transit.

‘Those Who Remain’ by Eliane Raheb

Al Shambouk, a high peak located in Akkar, Lebanon, is the homeland of Haykal, a Christian farmer. In this complex geographical spot a few kilometres away from Syria, Haykal decided to build a farm, and a restaurant. Each day, he deals with the dust from the neighbouring quarries, the agricultural stagnation, as well as the sectarian tensions and the political and economic repercussions of the Syrian crisis. And yet, Haykal feels he must remain in his land now more than ever.

‘Tramontane’ by Vatche Boulghourjian

Rabih, a young blind man, lives in a village in Lebanon. To make ends meet, he sings in a choir and edits Braille documents. His life unravels when he tries to apply for a passport and discovers that his identification card is forged.

‘Wake Me Up’ by Reem Al Bayyat

Salam is experiencing a mid-life crisis. As she tries to revive her artistic hobby, she feels judged by society and a sense of guilt.

‘Zaineb Hates the Snow’ by Kaouther Ben Hania

Tunisian nine-year-old Zaineb is set to move to Canada with her mother and new step-father. Zaineb is told that once she is in Canada, she can finally see the snow. But she wants nothing to do with this new country, because Zaineb has decided to hate the snow. The coming-of-age documentary covers six years in the life of the young girl.

‘Hedi’ by Mohammad Bin Attia

Hedi is a quiet young man following a path that’s been chosen for him. The same week that his mother is planning his wedding, his boss sends him to the seaside town of Mahdia to seek out new clients. He meets Rim, a free-spirited globetrotter, and the two begin a love affair. With preparations for the wedding in full swing back at home, Hedi is forced to make a choice for himself.

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