Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

California Arab Film Festival

Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

California Arab Film Festival

Article excerpt

The 21st annual Arab Film Festival opened Oct. 13 at San Francisco's historic Castro Theatre. During the following 16 days, audiences in San Francisco, Oakland, Vallejo, Berkeley, Pasadena and Los Angeles enjoyed the exceptionally vibrant cadre of Arab cinema reflecting the diverse personalities of contemporary Arab communities in the Middle East, North Africa and the Diaspora.

The festival screened 25 documentaries and 25 narratives from 28 countries. Seven feature films and 11 short films were directed by women, including "Solitaire," the opening night hit directed by Sophie Boutros. Five of the films featured LGBTQ stories, such as "In Between," Palestinian Maysaloun Hamoud's directorial debut. The award-winning "Gaza Surf Club" directed by Philip Gnadt and Mickey Yamine was one of the top crowd-pleasers. …

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