By Anealla Safdar in Toronto
Toronto International Film Festival is hovering near the half-way mark, but film critics are far from hanging up their press passes.
As the stronger presence of Arab cinema is celebrated by the region’s filmmakers, it is also motivating to see reviews take note of what’s on offer here.
Here are some highlights:
The Lebanese Rocket Society (DFI Mena Grantee)
By Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joreige
Indiewire: Plenty of documentaries look at the creation of works of art by solitary dreamers. Few examine scientific discovery in relative isolation. The Lebanese Rocket Society saves a fascinating chapter in engineering history.
By Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette
thefilmstage.com: It’s truly amazing to watch how guilt, regret, and sorrow can change the very make-up of your character. It may only be for a brief while, but that moment can impact the lives of many in tragic and devastating ways. This is the portrait of the war-torn area in the Middle East housing Israeli and Palestinian hostilities that writer/director Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette shares in her powerful new film Inch’Allah.
Fidaï (DFI Mena Grantee)
By Damien Ounouri
Variety: A lovely, elegant and stirring look at one man’s sometimes sturdy, sometimes wavering memories of being a fighter for Algeria’s liberation from French colonialism, Damien Ounouri’s “Fidai” marks a striking advance in Arabic documentary filmmaking.
After The Battle
By Yousry Nasrallah
Globe and Mail: Egyptian director Yousry Nasrallah’s drama about Egypt struggling to build a new society ingeniously mixes staged drama and real footage from last year’s protests in Tahrir Square.