Bassam Jarbawi, Shrihari Sathe / Feature Narrative / Palestine, USA, Qatar / 2018 / 90min / Dialogue: Arabic, Hebrew / Subtitles: English, Arabic
Cast: Ziad Bakri, Areen Omari, Mariam El Basha, Yasmine Qaddoumi
Young Ziad is the star of the Jalazon refugee camp basketball team in Palestine. When his best friend is shot dead by israeli forces, Ziad and his teammates attempt to assassinate an israeli settler. Fifteen years later, Ziad is released from prison. ‘Mafak’ is a haunting psychological thriller that follows a hallucinating Ziad as he struggles to adjust to his chaotic new world. Ziad’s mental disorder halts his advances with two love interests – Salma, a young woman from the camp, and Mina, a Palestinian-American filmmaker. Ziad becomes suicidal when soldiers imprison a young basketball player; in the dead of night he hitches a ride that may return him to a more familiar life.
About the filmmaker: Born and raised in Palestine, Bassam Jarbawi began working as a photographer during the second Intifada. His photographs produced several exhibits and still documentary Frequency (2004). Bassam completed his BA in Communication and Political Science at Macalester College, and earned his MFA in Screenwriting/Directing at Columbia University. During his studies at Columbia, he produced and directed short films and music videos in Palestine, the US and Jamaica. His short film “Roos Djaj (Chicken Heads)” won Best Film at the Columbia University Film Festival, premiered at New York Film Festival and won First Prize at Dubai’s International Film Festival.