This year, Barbican Centre will host the annual one week London Palestine Film Festival, which showcases a selection of films and documentaries from the region, all looking at serious issues through the creative lens of cinema.
Starting on Friday 17 November, the festival's curation will open with the intimate documentary feature Tomorrow’s Freedom by filmmaking sisters Georgia and Sophia Scott, whose lenses have framed a powerful picture of imprisoned Palestinian political leader Marwan Barghouti. As the only film included in the festival's programme to move away from a fictional narrative, Tomorrow’s Freedom follows the family of Barghouthi - who, amidst claims of being ‘the Palestinian Nelson Mandela’, is currently serving five life sentences in an Israeli prison - to comprise a collage of interviews making up a portrait of a man who could one day lead his people to freedom.
Screenings of other films include Waiting for Gaza and Dégradé, with both features by filmmaking twins Arab and Tarzan Nasser. Taking two differing approaches, Waiting For Gaza sees the duo take a renewed approach to cinema as we follow them to the heart of their twinship, where revelations come about on what inspires them to keep on making cinema. The film follows their Cannes nominated film Dégradé which is just as hard hitting for a different set of reasons. Taking place in a hair salon, what starts out as a some what portrayl of eccentricities turns much more sinister when you realise, the cast isn’t in a hair salon because they want to be but instead because they’re trapped, while Hamas and a lion supposedly fight it out on the street. If the murder mystery Medusa Deluxe - released earlier this year - was a hair raising thriller, Dégradé is more of nail biting (yet equally dazzling) watch.
The London Palestine Film Festival was established in 1998 and contributed to run until 2012 when it took a short hiatus Until 2016. This Is the first year the festival has taken place since the pandemic in 2020 with cultural centres ICA and Barbican both taking part with specialist programmes.