A tight-knit group of young Syrian women embark upon on a radical project: producing a play that lays bare the culture of misogyny and sexual abuse that has blighted the lives of females in their country for generations.
DIRECTED BY HEBA KHALED, TALAL DERKI AND ALI WAJEEH
Farah, Eliana, Inana, Souhir and Grace want to blow the whistle on women’s oppression, though they know their production will make it even harder for them to get work. Collaborating with exiled Syrian filmmakers Heba Khaled (making her feature debut) and Talal Derki (the Oscar-nominated OF FATHERS AND SONS) — and Ali Wajeeh on the ground in Damascus — the women fan out through the war-weary city to gather individual stories that will form the basis of their play.
They record testimonies from across the socio-economic spectrum, from actresses to factory workers to stay-at-home mothers. What emerges are variations of the same harrowing tale: stories of abuse, blackmail and even imprisonment at hands of husbands, brothers, fathers, employers and powerful officials who wield unchecked patriarchal power to keep them trapped without access to justice.
But the issues explored in both the play and film are closer than they appear… Just as the team of filmmakers and their subjects are making progress in their collaborative expose, one member of the group unexpectedly quits the project. As the truth behind her decision is revealed, everyone involved is forced to confront—in painfully intimate terms—the very exploitation they’ve been documenting.
DIRECTOR HEBA KHALED ● TALAL DERKI ● ALI WAJEEH
PRODUCERS SIGRID DYEKJÆR ● HEBA KALED ● TALAL DERKI ● BETH EARL
88 MIN. ● 2023 ● ARABIC