Florence November 25th – December 2nd 2016

International documentary film festival

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  • Allô Chérie

    France, Lebanon 2015 23'
    Directed by: Danielle Arbid
    Beirut files past our eyes through the windows of a car. The voice of a woman speaks over the journey. It is Danielle Arbid’s mother talking on the phone with an interminable series of different interlocutors. Time goes by, the daylight gradually wanes and then disappears, and the woman’s voice gets more and more agitated, while the ride feels like a desperate race across a dead-end maze.

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    2016 Saturday, November 26th, Spazio Alfieri, 6:45 pm

  • Aux frontières
    On Borders

    France, Lebanon 2013 58'
    Directed by: Danielle Arbid
    A tour of the frontier between the land with two names, Israel and Palestine, and the neighbouring countries: Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, and Egypt. Without ever crossing the border, we travel between Lebanon and Jordan, the settlements of refugees, exiled, and enemies. Danielle Arbid tries to watch that land with the same eyes as those who see it from outside, whose gaze is tinted by disparate, conflicting feelings.

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    2016 Sunday, November 27th, Spazio Alfieri, 6:30 pm

  • Beyrouth Hôtel
    Beirut Hotel

    France, Lebanon 2011 99'
    Directed by: Danielle Arbid
    Zoha, a Lebanese young chanteuse of a night club who is trying to get rid of her controlling, oppressive ex-husband, and Mathieu, a French attorney on a business trip who will end up as a suspect for espionage, meet one night in Beirut. For ten days, they will live a love story made of fear, desire, intrigues, and violence. A crossover of spy story and noir, Beirut Hotel portrays a relationship on a knife-edge that reflects a country still walking the line between war and peace, where anything can happen at any moment.

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    2016 Wednesday, November 30th, Istituto Francese, 7:00 pm

  • Conversation de Salon II

    France, Lebanon 2009 29'
    Directed by: Danielle Arbid
    The second chapter of the series Conversations de salon, this is another work filmed in Lebanon that proposes the same patterns as the previous one: in Beirut, the film-maker’s mother welcomes her friends every afternoon, and the women talk of their lives sitting on the sofa. Words flow, secrets surface, swinging between hope and despair. In Conversations de salon II, these women painstakingly describe what makes them happy: to travel, get a lifting, pray…

    2016 Saturday, November 26th, Spazio Alfieri, 6:45 pm

  • Conversations de Salon I

    France, Lebanon 2004 29'
    Directed by: Danielle Arbid
    Beirut. In her mother’s living room, Danielle Arbid records three conversations among her friends through which she explores the Lebanon of those years. Made of three short films, Conversations de Salon I deals with the war, the exile in France, but also conjugal disappointment, and the burden of centuries-old traditions. A protected place like the living room allows these women to give vent to their emotions, offering glimpses of comfort and sheltering them from an uncertain future, while the camera becomes invisible.

    2016 Saturday, November 26th, Spazio Alfieri, 6:45 pm

  • Dans les champs de bataille
    In the Battlefields

    France, Lebanon 2004 90'
    Directed by: Danielle Arbid
    Beirut, 1983. The secret life of 12-year-old Lina pivots on Siham, her aunt’s cleaning woman, six years older than she. Even though Lina stands by her side and supports her clandestine affairs, the little one is hardly noticed by Siham and the rest of her family – her father above all, a destructive man, a gambler and adventurer. Among the uncertainty of a daily life dominated by war, passion, and frustration, Lina enters into the adult world without a real awareness of good or evil…

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    2016 Monday, November 28th, Spazio Alfieri, 8:45 pm

  • Étrangère

    France, Lebanon 2002 45'
    Directed by: Danielle Arbid
    Margot is a migrant who came from one of the countries right on the other side of the Mediterranean Sea. She is 78 years old but still walks to work every day as laundry presser in the luxurious apartments of wealthy Parisians. Most of the time she doesn’t even meet them, but she absorbs their world like a little girl in a doll’s house.

    2016 Friday, December 2nd, La Compagnia, 7:00 pm

  • Le Passeur

    France, Lebanon 1999 13'
    Directed by: Danielle Arbid
    Ibrahim, a Kurdish political refugee, is hired by the French health service that repatriates the bodies of people of African origin who die in France. On his first day at work, he witnesses the removal of a corpse from a flat in the Parisian banlieue. Ibrahim will be catapulted into a confusing, strange world, with funny undertones in spite of its harsh reality. He’ll become a sort of ferryman from life to death.

    2016 Sunday, November 27th, Spazio Alfieri, 6:30 pm

  • Nihna / Nous

    France, Lebanon 2005 13'
    Directed by: Danielle Arbid
    Two characters only, or rather three: one of them is the film director, Danielle Arbid; the second is Danielle’s father, the healthy, lively version of the past, with a mouth to speak with and eyes to see with; the third is the same man in the present, a very ill one, nearing his end. We see him only from the back, no face, no voice. A creature about to go whose presence the film director seems to be afraid of – or maybe, she fears his absence even more. The fear of loss is mixed with the fear of getting lost.

    2016 Monday, November 28th, Spazio Alfieri, 8:45 pm

  • Peur de rien
    Parisienne

    France, Lebanon 2016 120'
    Directed by: Danielle Arbid
    The Nineties. 18-year-old Lina arrives in Paris to continue her studies. She is looking for that which she has never found in her native land, Lebanon: freedom. Thus begins her adult life, running away from the last remnant of family she still had after her departure from Beirut. In this adventure in search for her identity, Lina will become aware of her self, switching from a Paris to another Paris to the rhythm of her love encounters. Because at 18 years of age you dream to be with the world, not one boyfriend only.

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    2016 Thursday, December 1st, Istituto Francese, 7:00 pm

  • Raddem
    Demolition

    France, Lebanon 1998 17'
    Directed by: Danielle Arbid
    In 1996, a young woman of Lebanese origin returns to Beirut after years of absence, feeling like a foreigner. She’s looking for the photographer who took a picture of her house before it was reduced to ruins during the war. She will find out that Samir, the photographer, is not there either, he left too. And the building that once was the family home is about to disappear, razed to the ground by bulldozers.

    2016 Friday, December 25th, La Compagnia, 6:30 pm

  • Seule avec la guerre
    Alone with War

    France, Lebanon 2000 58'
    Directed by: Danielle Arbid
    After a sixteen-year-long civil war officially ended in 1991, Lebanon tries to get back to a very difficult fresh start. However, behind an apparent calm lie the traumas of conflict and the guilt of a whole nation. Danielle Arbid returns to Beirut: her camera captures the fear of war, the ghost of an unpunished enemy, and the burden of a past whose memory and wounds are still too fresh to be forgotten. Despite a memorial is still lacking in the city, the scars of war are deeply felt in the collective spirit.

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    2016 Friday, December 25th, La Compagnia, 6:30 pm

  • This Smell of Sex

    France, Lebanon 2008 20'
    Directed by: Danielle Arbid
    One day, Danielle Arbid is asked to realize a radio show. The filmmaker meets and consults women and men whom she knows, in Lebanon, and records a vast collection of a generation’s intimate stories on the ideas, events, and experiences regarding sex. A little while after the broadcast, the same material is reused to realize a short film.

    2016 Friday, December 2nd, La Compagnia, 7:00 pm

  • Un homme perdu
    A Lost Man

    France, Lebanon 2007 97'
    Directed by: Danielle Arbid
    Thomas Koré, a French photographer, travels all over the world in search of extreme experiences. He crosses the path of Fouad Saleh, a fugitive without a story or memory of his past. Nocturnal wanderers rambling between Syria and Jordan, they go through the waste land of commercial sex in motel rooms, in the remotest Arabic province. A film about the loss of the self, reminiscent of the photographic approach of Antoine D’Agata (also consultant for the script) who inspired the character of Thomas Koré.

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    2016 Saturday, November 26th, La Compagnia, 10:15 pm

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