A programme of shorts from Qatar
Smicha - Amal Al-Muftah
Shishbarak - Bayan Dahdah
Elevate - Hamida Issa
Dunia - Amer Jamhour
Kashta - AJ Al-Thani
Narrative / Qatar / 14 min / English subtitles
Director: Hamida Issa
Producer: Basel Owies
Cast: Dalal Ahmad, Kristine Santos, Ashiq Khan, Um Rashid
Latifa is a young Qatari lady in her 20s who is always accompanied by Rosie, her Filipino maid. One day they both get stuck in Latifa's elevator and find that, while they are isolated from the material world, they are liberated from social constraints.
Hamida Issa is a Qatari filmmaker, writer and producer. She graduated with a BA in Politics from University College London and an MA in Global Cinemas and the Transcultural from SOAS. Issa has worked for the education team at the Doha Film Institute, and in 2011 made her first short film, '15 Heartbeats' which premiered at the Doha Tribeca Film Festival. In 2014, she became the first Qatari woman in history to step foot on Antarctica, and she is currently making her first feature-length documentary, 'To the Ends of the Earth', about that experience.
Narrative / Qatar / 15 min / English subtitles
Director: Amal Al Muftah
Producer: Geoff Hunt, George Chalouhi
Cast: Ali Mirza, Reema Al Muftah
A tender story of an Alzheimer-diagnosed grandfather who promises to buy a goldfish for his only granddaughter the next time she visits.
Amal Al-Muftah was born in 1994 in Doha, and is currently studying Communications at Northwestern University in Qatar. She started making films in high school, then narrowed her focus to directing, making films including ‘Alkora’ (2013), the award-winning ‘Alhamali’ (2014) and ‘Smicha’ (2016). Her third narrative film, ‘Sh’hab’, is currently in development.
Narrative / Qatar / 11 min / English subtitles
Director: A.J. Al Thani
Producer: Jaime Siordia
Cast: Mansour Al Nahdi, Ahmad Al Yafei, Ali Al Nahdi
A father takes his two sons out on a trip to the desert to go hunting, but the results are not quite what he was expecting.
A.J. Al Thani is a Qatar-born filmmaker. Her love for movies and moviemaking began at the age of six when she saw ‘Star Wars’ (1977) in the cinema in 1999. She began to pursue her dream of being a filmmaker with the launch of the Doha Film Institute. Al-Thani’s relationship with the Institute began in 2010 when she participated in one of its first film workshops, which opened the door for many local filmmakers to pursue their passion. For almost six years Al-Thani has been developing her skills with the help of the Institute. She is now working on her first professional short film through a grant from the Institute.
Narrative / Qatar / 15 min / English subtitles
Director: Amer Jamhour
Cast: M. A. Lazurdi, Dana AlRefai, Mohanned Al-Melhem
Dishevelled, anxious and short-tempered, Dunia’s mother is on some kind of mission. She drives through the night with the nine-year-old girl in the passenger seat, then pulls off into the woods by the side of the road. A policeman shows up and the already-strange night becomes a life-or-death struggle.
Amer Jamhour was born and raised in Amman, where he obtained a BA in Business and Marketing from the University of Jordan before moving to London to pursue a career in the creative industries. He dabbled in advertising and motion graphics for 10 years and took several short courses in ﬁlmmaking, until he graduated from the National Film and Television School with a postgraduate diploma in Script Development. Since then, Jamhour has developed scripts with writers and producers from the Middle East on a freelance basis, and recently directed his ﬁrst short ﬁlm, ‘Dunia’. Now based in London, Jamhour is currently working on his next short ﬁlm while studying MA in Film Directing from the University of the Arts, London (LCC).
Narrative / Qatar / 10 min / English subtitles
Director: Bayan Dahdah
Cast: Sarah Yousef, Hania Hammoudi
After deciding to prepare ‘shishbarak’ for a friend’s visit, a young woman refers to her mother’s cookbook to remind her how the recipe goes. Memories of her mother’s at times exasperating presence overwhelm her so that it’s as though the woman is right there in the kitchen with her. ‘Shishbarak’ gently and humorously captures the wonderful effects of spending time with loved ones, even if they aren’t actually there.
Bayan Dahdah, of Palestinian origin, was born in 1993 in Amman and raised in Doha. Although she completed a degree in Architecture in the UK, cameras have always been a huge part of her life, for both photography and videography. Made as part of the Doha Film Institute’s Short Narrative Lab, ‘Shishbarak’ marks her filmmaking debut, and she aspires to combine her creative background with her personal experiences to write and direct more films in the future. She is now working on her second short film.