International: Middle East

Karlovy Vary 2024 Review: TROPICANA, A Middle Age Coming of Age With Seidlian Touch

Omer Tobi's debut feature sees a weary supermarket cashier in the Israeli desert embarks on an unexpected journey of self-discovery in the echoes of Ulrich Seidl´s poetics.

Mediterrane 2024 Review: TO A LAND UNKNOWN Challenges Conventional Immigrant Dramas

Palestinian-Danish filmmaker Mahdi Fleifel navigates the harrowing realities of exile and survival, set against the dilapidated backdrop of Athens, in a bold departure from his documentary roots.

AIFF Jordan 2024 Preview: Context Is Everything

The Amman International Film Festival - Awal Film (AIFF) is celebrating its fifth edition this summer, in what is shaping up to be a hot July for the Middle East. Among the more than 30 long films and many short...

Hot Docs 2024 Review: IMMORTALS Follows Iraqi Youth on the Frontlines

Swiss director Maja Tschumi presents a compelling exploration of the lives of Iraq's youth navigating the post-US invasion landscape, through the lens of the pivotal 2019 October Revolution.

First Look 2024 at Museum of the Moving Image: Preview

The First Look Festival returns to the Museum of the Moving Image this month offering audiences opportunities to see exciting new films of all kinds from all over the world. There are films just out of Sundance, like Haley Elizabeth...

Berlinale 2024 Review: WHO DO I BELONG TO, Lyrical Drama Explores Radical Family Ties

In her debut film Who Do I Belong To, Tunisian-born, Canada-based filmmaker Meryam Joober explores the poignant narrative of Aicha, a mother faced with the daunting reality of her sons' association with ISIS. The film is set in the tranquil...

The Novelist's Films: Cinema of Nuri Bilge Ceylan

If Ceylan's previous films gave you the impression that he's making wordy filmed plays in a spectacular setting, 'About Dry Grasses' will surprise you.

Berlinale 2024: Exclusive WHO DO I BELONG TO Poster Premiere, Exploring War's Human Toll

Tunisian-Canadian director Meryam Joobeur will be unveiling her first feature film in the Berlinale competition.

INSHALLAH A BOY Review: A Situation To Crack Under

Last year, the Cannes Film Festival crowds screened its first ever Jordanian film, and simultaneously, the debut of director Amjad Al Rasheed. Inshallah A Boy is about the hypocrisy of vultures in times of grief, the societal constraints of a...

Toronto 2023 Review: NAGA, Drug-Infused Race Against the Clock

Sara is in the middle of the desert, a fair drive from her city of Riyadh. She's been taking drugs. The police raided the event she was at, scattering everyone. She can't find her boyfriend. She doesn't have the keys...

Locarno 2023 Review: Dissent and Dreams Intersect in CRITICAL ZONE's Midnight Tehran Odyssey

Iranian director Ali Ahmadzadeh clinched the main award with its psychedelic portrayal of Tehran's nocturnal wanderings.

ASHKAL: THE TUNISIAN INVESTIGATION Review: Riveting Supernatural Noir

If a person sets themselves alight and no one sees it, does the act lose its meaning? Is a half-built housing complex still a potential home, or a constant reminder of impermenance? Can justice be served only through the law,...

Exclusive: Poster & Trailer for Tunisian Supernatural Thriller ASHKAL

With a slightly new title, Ashkal: The Tunisian Investigation, this eeri mystery was something of a sleeper hit on the festival circuit in 2022. We're seeing a rise in more genre.leaning work coming from MENA countries; considering the rich folkloric...

Cannes 2023 Review: ABOUT DRY GRASSES, Turkish Drama Is Too Profound By Half

Nuri Bilge Ceylan returns with his seventh consecutive Cannes Competition entry, another sprawling three-hour plus drama about the human condition.

Lighthouse 2023: Final Wave Announced, Brittany Snow's PARACHUTE To Open

Tickets go on sale tomorrow for this year's edition of the Lighthouse Film Festival in Long Beach Island, New Jersey. We already highlighted the midnighter program, led by Ted Geoghegan's Brooklyn 45, the other day. The final wave of titles...

JOHN WICK: CHAPTER 4 Review: It's Big. Really Big. For JOHN WICK Fans That's Great.

In his ongoing quest to defeat The High Table, John Wick discovers a way to earn his freedom once and for all. In order to do so he must defeat his most formidable foe yet, a ruthless, high ranking member...

Series Mania 2023 Preview: Retro Nostalgia, 80s/90s Wave, Female Power Dominate World Television Series

French series festival Series Mania grew to become an important event dedicated uniquely to TV series in Europe. The festival brings world premieres of the intriguing international series to big screens throughout eight days of discoveries. The 2023 edition will...

Rotterdam 2023 Review: ENDLESS BORDERS Aims For Humanism

Directed by Abbas Amini, the drama from Iran blends social melodrama and refugee thriller in an audience-driven narrative depicting a flight for freedom.

International Genre Focused Hub 'Fantastic Pavilion' to Launch at Marche du Film at Cannes

Variety had the exclusive yesterday, an announcement of the creation of Fantastic Pavilion, "... a significant booth and exhibition space located at the Cannes Marché du Film in the Palais des Festivals".    Announced this week during Ventana Sur in...

Venice 2022 Review: WORLD WAR III, Slapstick Iranian Thriller Unveils Trickling Terror

Directed by Houman Seyyedi, the wartime adventure is Iran's submission for the Academy Award for Best International Feature Film.