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ANA ARABIA

MATERIALS

DOCUMENTATION

PHOTOS

AnaArabia-Photo1AnaArabia-Photo2AnaArabia-Photo3AnaArabia-Photo4AnaArabia-directorAmosGitai

VIDEOS

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Amos Gitai

2013 || Israel || 85 mins || Color || Feature

WORLD SALES

Agav Films (Paris)

FESTIVALS / AWARDS

Venice 2013 – Competition
Venice 2013 – Winner – Green Drop Award
Venice 2013 – Winner – Bresson Prize

SYNOPSIS

Young journalist Yael visits a small community of outcasts, Jews and Arabs, who live together in a forgotten enclave at the "border" between Jaffa and Bat Yam, in Israel. She discovers a range of characters far removed from the usual clichés offered by the region. Their relation to time is different than that of the city around them. In this dilapidated and fragile place, there is a possibility of coexistence.

Filmed in one single sequence-shot. A universal metaphor from the master director of KADOSH, KIPPUR and FREE ZONE.

CAST

Yuval Scharf
Yussuf Abu-Warda
Sarah Adler
Assi Levy
Shady Srour

PRESS QUOTES

Prolific Israeli filmmaker Amos Gitai's latest feature is a single-take film set in a small mixed enclave in Jaffa… A young Israeli journalist visits a tiny enclave in Jaffa where Jews and Arabs live together in harmony in Ana Arabia, the latest film from prolific Israeli filmmaker Amos Gitai (Kadosh, Free Zone).

The film tries to take an even-handed approach to the Arab-Israeli conflict, showing people from both sides living together and suffering through the same worries, hardships and joys, essentially presenting life itself as the great equalizer. The attempt at impartiality even extends to the film’s formal qualities, as it was shot in a single, 81-minute take (shot on an

Arri Alexa) that avoids having to cut between different sides… The film doesn’t offer any easy answers, though taken together, the stories mainly underline the humanity of the characters, an effect reminiscent of Gitai’s own Wadi documentaries, about a group of Jews and Arabs living together in northern Israel… The acting, by an ensemble that actually mainly consists of Israeli actors speaking Hebrew with the occasional "jalla" thrown in, is down-to-earth and realistic, while the supply moving Steadicam, operated by Nir Bar and with Giora Bejach credited as cinematographer, observes the characters from a slight remove. The magical-hour timing of the take (the tenth and last, according to the press materials) further infuses the proceedings with a sense of fleeting beauty. The sound design is crisp and high on ambient noise, which beautifully contrasts with the occasional use of the score’s classical pieces.

— Boyd Van Hoeij, THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER

 

A young journalist visits a tiny community of Arabs and Jews living relatively harmoniously in Jaffa… Partly inspired by the true story of a Holocaust survivor who married a Palestinian man and raised several children with him, the pic lightly touches on history, the challenges of cross-cultural romance and the shifting demographics of the region today… The Steadicam, operated by Nir Bar (Giora Bejach is the film’s d.p.), floats alongside the minimal action throughout, taking advantage of the magic-hour lighting of the 81-minute period over which the pic was shot (apparently this was the 10th take and the only one, per press notes, helmer Gitai was happy enough with to use)… With the emphasis on architecture and the slow-breath rhythm of the action, the film feels recognizably congruent with Gitai’s other pics…

— Leslie Felperin, VARIETY

 

I was spellbound. In his latest masterpiece, Gitai manages to take his audience to a world where we can all coexist and do it with patience, understanding and a grand dose of love. When a film can do that, it's not only a cinematic success, but a miracle… I think we all believe that the power of cinema is to change the world and Gitai's film helps to do just that with one single, quiet shot, a few characters and their wisdom.

— E. Nina Rothe, THE HUFFINGTON POST