Wajib

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    Wajib

    Directed by

    Palestine, Colombia, Germany, France, United Emirates, Qatar, and Norway

    2017

    96 min

    • Arabic

    Drama

    Toronto IFFMar del Plata IFF

    Abu Shadi is a divorced father and a school teacher in his mid-60s living in Nazareth. After his daughter’s wedding in one month he will be living alone. Shadi, his architect son, arrives from Rome after years abroad to help his father in hand delivering the wedding invitations as per local Palestinian custom. As the estranged pair spend the day together, the tense details of their relationship come to a head challenging their fragile and very different lives.

    Awards

    Show All Awards Show Less Awards
    • Don Quixote Award, Special Prize, Youth Jury Award - Locarno Festival
    • Palestinian submission for the Academy Awards / Don Quixote Award, Special Prize, Youth Jury Award - Locarno Festival
    • Palestinian submission for the Academy Awards
    • Special Mention - BFI London IFF
    • Youth Jury Prize - Cinemed Montpellier
    • Best Fiction Feature, Best Actor (Mohammad Bakri and Saleh Bakri) - Dubai IFF

    Festivals

    Labels & Line Ups

    Credits

    Cinematography
    Antoine Heberle
    Editing
    Jacques Comets

    Director's Statement

    In Palestine, there is a tradition which remains a big part of life today. When someone gets married, the men of the family, usually the father and sons, are expected to personally deliver the wedding invitations to each invitee in person. There is no mailing of invitations, or having them delivered by strangers. And unless the invitations are personally delivered, it is considered disrespectful. I don’t know any other place which adheres to this tradition as much as the Palestinians living in the North of Palestine, where WAJIB is set. WAJIB loosely means «social duty». When my husband sister’s got married, it was his wajib to deliver the invitations with his father. I decided to silently tag along as he and his father spent five days traversing the city and surrounding villages delivering each invitation. As the silent observer, it was at times funny and other times painful. Aspects of that special relationship between father and son, the tensions of a sometimes tested love between them, came out in small ways. I began working on the idea for a film about this fragile relationship.

    Production
    PHILISTINE FILMS
    Sales
    PYRAMIDE INTERNATIONAL

    Press

    An intimate, well-played disquisition on what it means to be a Palestinian abroad versus a Palestinian at home.

    Jay Weissberg, Variety

    A nicely low-key comedy-drama of fangled family and community ties.

    Neil Young, The Hollywood Reporter

    Accessible and genial glimpse into a complex and sometimes fraught area of the Middle East.

    Neil Young, The Hollywood Reporter

    Jacir's strong suits are as a scriptwriter and as a director of actors. She crafts lively, believable dialogue throughout, shot through with a likable streak of earthy humor, providing nuanced characterisations for the Bakris to convincingly inhabit and bring to three-dimensional life.

    Neil Young, The Hollywood Reporter

    A whip-smart, moving comedy.

    John Bleasdale, Cine Vue

    Annemarie  Jacir

    Annemarie Jacir

    Palestine

    Growing up Palestinian, you know there is always another side of the story. There is a hidden side, something marginalized, something that we are not being told. So as a filmmaker I have learned to look for that. Being Palestinian has informed the way I approach all my stories, whether it has to do directly with Palestine or not. I learned at a young age to look for the other side of the story.

    Palestinian filmmaker Annemarie Jacir has written, directed and produced over sixteen films. Her films LIKE TWENTY IMPOSSIBLES and SALT OF THE SEA were selected in Cannes and WHEN I SAW YOU - in Berlin. Her latest film WAJIB premiered in Locarno Festival. Annemarie also teaches screenwriting, works as an editor and script consultant.

    Selected Filmography