An Erased Filming Memory-1576075590295
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Sharjah Art Foundation’s annual film festival, Sharjah Film Platform (SFP), returns for its second edition from December 14 to 21. Featuring more than 50 featured by local, regional and international filmmakers as well as talks and workshops, the eight-day event will also hand out awards in various categories.

Here are Gulf News tabloid!’s top films not to miss.

Children of the Lake-1576075595397

Film: Children of the Lake

Director: Emerson Reyes

Country: Philippines

Running time: 17 minutes

Language: Tagalog with English subtitles

When: December 14, 8pm.

Where: Mirage City Cinema

Lele and Bella are playing cops and robbers near the lake. Their innocent pastime turns into a deadly game of cat and mouse when they meet a lone soldier who is being hunted down for conspiring to take over their land. The two young children struggle to decide between righteousness and duty as they search for a way out of the conflict.

From the Mountain-1576075600238

Film: From the Mountain

Director: Faisal Attrache

Country: USA

Running time: 21 minutes

Language: Arabic with English subtitles

When: December 14, 8.38pm

Where: Mirage City Cinema

In 1922, a charismatic and fiery Syrian farmer and local leader must decide whether to fight for the dignity and freedom of the nation he is striving to build or for the safety and security of his community and family.

That Cloud Never Left-1576075612388

Film: That Cloud Never Left

Director: Yashaswini Raghunandan

Country: India

Running time: 65 minutes

Language: Bengali with English subtitles

When: December 15, 6pm

Where: Al Hamra Cinema

In a village, people use discarded reels of film to make loud toys such as rattlers, whistles and whirligigs. Every day, they make a few hundred toys, and for every hundred toys, they splice, slit and rip strips of film. As they follow this routine monotonously, a few narratives leak out of the shredded analogues of film and fill the surroundings with phantasmagoria.

Above Us Only Sky-1576075588059

Film: Above Us Only Sky

Director: Arthur Kleinjan

Country: The Netherlands

Running time: 29 minutes

Language: English

When: December 15 at 8.15pm

Where: Mirage City Cinema

This film begins with an investigation into a plane crash in communist Czechoslovakia, which only one woman survives. This event becomes the point of entry into a dense web of seemingly unrelated events, and viewers become unsuspecting witnesses to political defiance and reprisals. The past informs the present, and natural, political and technological disasters are followed by tales of survival.

Persmission to Land-1576075608105

Film: Permission to Land

Director: Ieva Saudargaite Douaihi

Country: Lebanon

Running time: 17 minutes

Language: Arabic and Lithuanian with English subtitles

When: December 15, 8.44pm

Where: Mirage City Cienma

Shot in various locations that used to serve as landing strips or airports, this film explores Lebanon’s forgotten aeronautical history while soaring through a parallel narrative in a foreign tongue with a protagonist who is looking for a place to land.

Letter to My Son-1576075604156

Film: Letter to my Son

Director: Dhia Jerbi

Country: France

Running time: 26 minutes

Language: Arabic with English subtitles

When: December 16, 6.07pm.

Where: Al Hamra Cinema

This documentary film focuses on a letter from a father to his son, whose birth leads to questions of paternity, inheritance and exile. A small apartment becomes a meeting place for three generations torn between Tunisia and France.

Dead Horse Nebula-1576075596672

Film: Dead Horse Nebula

Director: Tarik Aktasş

Country: Turkey

Running time: 73 minutes

Language: Turkish with English subtitles

When: December 16, 8pm.

Where: Mirage City Cinema

Seven-year-old Hay found a dead horse in an open field and watched his father and other adults struggle to get rid of it. Unsure of this memory, he is nonetheless very influenced by the incident, and when he cuts himself during a sacrificial rite, everything comes rushing back. Step by step, Hay goes down an inevitable spiritual path where he confronts the relationship between humans and nature and the unity of life and matter.


Film: Liyana

Directors: Aaron and Amanda Kopp

Country: Eswatini

Running time: 77 minutes

Language: English and SiSwati with English subtitles

When: December 17, 4pm.

Where: Al Hamra Cinema

An animated African tale, this documentary sees five orphaned children in Eswatini, who collaborate to tell a story of perseverance drawn from their darkest memories and brightest dreams. The journey of their fictional character, a Swazi girl on a dangerous quest to rescue her young twin brothers, is interwoven with poetic documentary scenes.

An Erased Filming Memory-1576075590295

Film: An erased filmic memory — a long way to nowhere

Director: Omnia Sabry

Country: Egypt

Running time: 7 minutes

Language: Arabic with English subtitles

When: December 17, 6.56pm.

Where: Al Hamra Cinema

This film explores and questions the limitations of the materialities of light-sensitive surfaces and their ability to document our experiences and realities. Using the same surfaces that are being questioned, through analogue, digital and self-made sensors, An erased filmic memory — a long way to nowhere tries to reconstruct personal memories and events from a period of time that the artist herself cannot fully remember.

Intentional Sweat-1576075602206

Film: Intentional Sweat

Director: Chrystele Nicot

Country: Hong Kong

Running time: 67 minutes

Language: English with Arabic subtitles

When: December 17 at 8pm.

Where: Mirage City Cinema

In Hong Kong in 2030, a Korean drama actress, Chinese art collector, French banker, Hong Kongese dumpling maker, British jockey and Indian agronomic doctor are participating in what appears to be a speed dating party. They become the last six people remaining after a climate catastrophe and are under pressure to engage with the members of the other ethnic groups to ensure the future of humankind.

Boral Pather Panchali-1576075593631

Film: Boral Pather Panchali

Director: Alex Cunningham

Country: USA

Running time: 12 minutes

Language: No dialogue

When: December 18, 8pm.

Where: Mirage City Cinema

Alex Cunningham travelled to India to find the shooting location of Satyajit Ray’s 1955 masterpiece, ‘Pather Panchali’. Once a rural village, Boral is now a bustling suburb with electricity, running water and densely packed paved roads — the signs of any modern Indian town. However, in many ways, Boral remains the same. The town knows and is proud of its place in cinematic history, but life goes on uninterrupted.


Film: Split

Director: Ghassen Mejri

Country: Tunisia

Running time: 10 minutes

Language: Arabic with English subtitles

When: December 19, 8.15pm.

Where: Al Hamra Cinema

After a painful experience, a man becomes a scavenger in the streets of Tunis. This status revives existentialist thoughts from his past.

Dunya's Day-1576075598121

Film: Dunya’s Day

Director: Raed Alsemari

Country: Saudi Arabia

Running time: 14 minutes

Language: Arabic with English subtitles

When: December 19, 9.02pm.

Where: Mirage City Cinema

Dunya’s perfectly planned graduation party spirals towards disaster when she is abandoned by all her household help.

Another Point of View-1576075592070

Film: Another Point of View

Director: Bilal Al Khatib

Country: Palestine

Running time: 15 minutes

Language: Arabic with English subtitles

When: December 19, 8pm

Where: Mirage City Cinema

Siblings Fadel and Najeeba have an exceptional relationship. Fadel has a so-called ‘mental illness’, and Najeeba perceives reality in her own way — not in response to her brother’s situation, but rather because life, as she sees it, is much simpler than it seems, simple enough that it does not matter how people in their village judge her and her brother.


Ticket details

Tickets can also be purchased at the box office in the Sharjah Art Foundation’s Information Centre at Al Mureijah Art Spaces throughout the festival. Cinema tickets can also be purchased at Al Hamra Cinema box office one hour before the screenings. They are priced Dh15 for students, Dh20 for general admission. Dh100 will get you an all-access pass.