The Chicago Palestine Film Festival runs Friday, April 19, through Friday, April 26. Screenings will be at Women in the Director’s Chair Theater, 941 W. Lawrence, and Univ. of Chicago Biological Sciences Learning Center, 924 E. 57th St. All screenings are free and unless otherwise noted are in English and/or Arabic with subtitles; for more information call 312-560-6661. Following is the schedule for April 19 through 25; a complete festival schedule is available on-line at


Going Home

Derek Cooper, a British army officer, witnessed the founding of the state of Israel and later became an activist for Palestinian refugees; this video by Omar Al-Qattan documents Cooper’s return visit to the region in 1995. 52 min. (WIDC Theater, 7:00)

Light at the End of the Tunnel

In this 2000 video, Subhi Zobaidi interviews nine people trying to adjust to life under the Palestinian Authority after being imprisoned in Arab or Israeli jails. 46 min. (WIDC Theater, 8:00)

Souha: Surviving Hell

After trying to assassinate the commander of the South Lebanese army, Souha Beshara spent ten years in the notorious Khiam detention center; this 2001 Lebanese video by Randa Chahal Sabbag follows her around Lebanon as she speaks out against the torture and abuse at Khiam. In French and Arabic with subtitles. 60 min. (WIDC Theater, 9:00)


Short films, program one

Annemarie Kattan Jacir’s The Satellite Shooters (2001, 15 min.) and Hady Zaccak’s Lebanese A Thousand and a Thousand Nights (1999, 15 min.). (WIDC Theater, 7:00)

Gaza Strip

See Critic’s Choice. (WIDC Theater, 7:30)


Waiting for Salahdin

Tawfik Abu Wael directed this 2001 video that examines the Arab community in Jerusalem. 52 min. (WIDC Theater, 1:00)

Bethlehem 2000 Project

A 90-minute anthology of five Palestinian shorts commissioned for the millennial celebration in December 1999. Directed by Azza Al-Hassan, Mai Masri, Subhi Zobaidi, Rachid Masharawi, and Elia Suleiman. (WIDC Theater, 2:00)

Jerusalem’s High Cost of Living

Hazim Bitar’s documentary includes footage of the second Palestinian intifada from late September 2000. 52 min. (WIDC Theater, 3:30)


Near Death

Four children tell their stories in this 1997 video about child labor in Gaza. Abdel Salam Shehada directed. 30 min. (Univ. of Chicago, 7:00)

Gaza Strip

See Critic’s Choice. (Univ. of Chicago, 7:30)


Short films, program two

Annemarie Kattan Jacir’s The Satellite Shooters (2001, 15 min.) and the U.S.-Palestinian Rock, Paper, Missiles (2000, 15 min.). (Univ. of Chicago, 7:00)

Chronicle of a Disappearance

Palestinian independent filmmaker Elia Suleiman returned to Nazareth after many years in New York to make this 1996 first feature, an intriguing, highly sophisticated, and often very funny combination of fiction, documentary, diary, essay, and home movie. Armed with irony, absurdist humor, and a handsome visual style, Suleiman offers a surprisingly comprehensive portrait of middle-class Palestinian life in Israel and a complex understanding of Arab identity within that world that encompasses both family and friends. 80 min. (JR) (Univ. of Chicago, 7:30)

Naji Ali: An Artist With Vision

Kasim Abid directed this 1999 British release about Palestinian political cartoonist Naji Ali, who was murdered in London in 1986. 52 min. (Univ. of Chicago, 9:00)


Gaza Ghetto: Portrait of a Palestinian Family

Per Holmquist, Joan Mandell, and Pierre Bjorklund directed this 1984 documentary for the Palestine Human Rights Campaign, about a Palestinian refugee family who’ve lived in a Gaza Strip camp since 1948. 82 min. (Univ. of Chicago, 7:00)

Song on a Narrow Path: Stories From Jerusalem

Akram Safadi, a Palestinian photographer in Jerusalem, directed this 2001 video profiling three people whose lives are impacted by the Israeli occupation of the West Bank. 52 min. (Univ. of Chicago, 8:30)

The Dupes

Three Palestinian refugees, living in Iraq during the 1950s, hope to cross the border into Kuwait in this 1972 Syrian feature by Tawfik Saleh. 107 min. (Univ. of Chicago, 9:30)


Going Home

See listing for Friday, April 19. (Univ. of Chicago, 7:00)

Short films, program three

Abdel Salam Shehada’s Little Hands (1996, 30 min.), Najwa Najjar’s Na’im and Wadee’a (1999, 20 min.), and the U.S.-produced Palestine Is Waiting (2001, 9 min.). (Univ. of Chicago, 8:00)

News Time

Video maker Azza Al-Hassan, hoping to counter the media image of Palestinians as a people beset by violence, fell in with some young boys, and in this 2001 documentary she finds herself overtaken by political developments. 50 min. (Univ. of Chicago, 9:00)