I Laugh Because I Know They Can’t Kill Me · 14.05.2024 @EyeFilmmuseum · Amsterdam

Regular tickets: €12.50. Many discount options including CineVille

I Laugh Because I Know They Can’t Kill Me

Mohanad Yaqubi demonstrates using archival footage that it was predominately makers from other cultures who determined what was filmed and what left out of shot. This meant that Palestinians themselves were not really seen. And invisible people can easily be dehumanised and disappear.The visualisation of Palestine has been formed around the holy landscape of the scriptures, mixed with the mystic orient of fantasies. Yaqubi makes us aware of the images imprinted in our minds. In the past Palestinians have all too often appeared as interchangeable, silent extras. Yaqubi regains the right to speak about their divided past and the picture of them that has been painted.This lecture investigates the history of image production around Palestine, to understand and position Palestinian cinema in the context of struggle against disappearance, at the same time, championing Palestinian filmmakers who have been experimenting resistance through forms, structures and aesthetics, breaking the barrier, brick by brick, through their films for the past 70 years, as a way of struggle, a cinematic one.

Born in Kuwait 1981 for a Palestinian father and Syrian mother, Mohanad Yaqubi grows up hearing the stories of the destruction of his hometown Al-Majdal from his grandparents, who were ethnically cleanse from there after the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948 and resided at an UNRWA Refugee camp in Gaza. Yaqubi is a filmmaker, producer and one of the founders of Idioms Film, an Arthouse production based in Ramallah since 2004, he is also a member of Subversive Film, a curatorial collective that seeks to research and redistribute militant cinema from Palestine and beyond. He is a resident researcher at KASK school of the Arts, Ghent since 2017.

A Fidai Film

Kamal Aljafari, 2024, 78′

Arabic with English subtitles

A Fidai Film aims to create a counter-narrative to this loss, presenting a form of cinematic sabotage that seeks to reclaim and restore the looted memories of Palestinian history. It’s a poignant exploration of identity, memory, and resistance, told through a unique blend of documentary and experimental filmmaking techniques.

Kamal Aljafari (1972) is a Palestinian filmmaker renowned for his distinctive approach to cinema. He considers all his works as an archive: “Images are not something that you make, but that you find”. His newest work A Fidai Film is a found footage film. In the summer of 1982 the Israeli army invaded Beirut. During this time it raided the Palestinian Research Center and looted its entire archive. The archive contained historical documents of Palestine, including a collection of still and moving images.

This event is part of In Songs and Scenes from Palestine,

In Songs and Scenes from Palestine, we get to view the history and cultural identity of the Palestinian people through their own lens. In this programme, Palestinian artists and filmmakers allow us to share in their culture and their stories. They watch and listen attentively to the personal stories of resilient Palestinians seeking contact with the place where their families lived, cried, sang, dreamed and loved for generations. The selection is made up of recent, powerful documentaries and artist films that shine a new light on archival footage, and in which the relationship between landscape, culture and identity plays a major role.

More infos: https://www.eyefilm.nl/en/programme/songs-and-scenes-from-palestine/1249657