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Dreams of the City

MIA Exhibition Series – presented by DFI

/ Feature Narrative / Syria / 1984 / Colour
In Arabic / English subtitles
Rated: Parental guidance is advised for viewers under the age of 13. Individuals under the age of 13 are not admitted into cinemas unless accompanied by an individual aged 18 or older.

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When his father dies, Dib, his younger brother and their mother (Yasmine Khlat) move away from their hometown Quneitra to Damascus. The mother’s despotic father reluctantly takes them in and tries to force her to remarry. Overwhelmed by the magic of the city, Dib wants to discover everything and is full of dreams, but his daily life is shaped by insults and punishments. Dib grows up against a backdrop of the political upheavals of the 1950s and loses his childish illusions in the face of such violence and brutality. The dreams of the city prove to be a nightmare. Mohammad Malas’ partly autobiographical debut film marked the transition to auteur cinema in Syria.