صدى البلد البلد سبورت قناة صدى البلد صدى البلد جامعات صدى البلد عقارات
Supervisor Elham AbolFateh
Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

Palestinian Short Film "Upshot" to World Premiere at 77th Locarno Film Festival


Thu 11 Jul 2024 | 03:50 PM
Upshot
Upshot
Yara Sameh - Pasant Elzsitony

"Upshot", a poignant Palestinian short film about human loss and resilience, will have its world premiere at the 77th Locarno International Film Festival in Switzerland, taking place Aug. 7-17.

It is also set to compete in the Pardi di Domani – Corti d'Autore Competition.

Upshot

"Upshot" is the latest film written and directed by acclaimed Palestinian filmmaker Maha Haj, whose last film, "Mediterranean Fever", won the Best Screenplay Prize in the Un Certain Regard sidebar of the Cannes Film Festival in 2022.

Set against the backdrop of Gaza's enduring strife, "Upshot" is a gripping drama brought to life by a starry cast headlined by Mohammed Bakri, Areen Omari, and Amer Hlehel.

The official description of the short film states that it follows "Suleiman and Lubna, a couple who retreat to a mist-shrouded, isolated farm as they try to cope with unspeakable loss.

Through the alchemy of storytelling, Suleiman and Lubna conjure a parallel reality free of their pain in which their lives unfold in vivid detail. But when a journalist intrudes upon their sanctuary, wielding the blunt force of truth, the fragile illusion they've constructed threatens to unravel."

Upshot

"Upshot" is co-produced by Palestine, Italy, and France.

It is produced by Ramallah-based company August Films with Hanna Atallah and Ronza Kamel — the two of which are also co-producing "Thank You for Banking with Us", which is in post-production and like "Upshot" will be distributed worldwide by MAD World and in all Arabic-speaking territories by MAD Distribution.

“UPSHOT is both a lamentation and a testament to the indomitable power of the human spirit,” Haj said. “In a world defined by suffering, Suleiman and Lubna's journey is a poignant reminder of the boundless resilience of the human imagination. With a narrative set in the future, this film confronts the stark reality of a nation scarred by decades of conflict. There are no easy answers, no political solutions to assuage the anguish of parents who have lost everything. And so, it unfolds in a realm unbound by time or place — a poignant reflection of the irreparable loss that defies earthly confines.”

Maha Haj

Haj is a filmmaker with a diverse background in English and Arabic literature. A graduate of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, she weaves her profound understanding of storytelling into each frame.

She began her career in filmmaking as an artistic designer on renowned productions such as "The Attack" by Ziad Douairi and "On the Hill" by Rafael Natjari.

Haj made her directorial debut in 2009 with the short film "Oranges", followed by the poignant documentary "Behind These Walls" in 2010.

Her first foray into feature filmmaking came in 2015 with "Personal Affairs" — a critically acclaimed work that was also selected for Un Certain Regard in the 2016 edition of the Cannes Film Festival.

"Mediterranean Fever" followed up its success at Cannes in 2022 with an extended festival tour that included Edinburgh, Chicago, Palm Springs, Sydney, Melbourne, Sarajevo, Vancouver, Goa, Sao Paolo, Sevilla and Rotterdam international film festivals.

The film won the Student Jury Prize at Tokyo FILMex and a Golden Firebird for Young Cinema at the Hong Kong International Film Festival. It was also Palestine’s official submission for Best International Feature Film at the Academy Awards the following year.