Part of The Human Rights Watch Film Festival, featuring free screenings of provocative new features and documentaries paired with post-film discussions!
Screening venue: Joel D. Valdez Main Library, 101 North Stone, Tucson, AZ
This program is made possible by the Tucson Pima Arts Council with additional funding from the Arizona Humanities Council and the UA School of Social and Behavioral Sciences.
Post-film discussion with Dr. Maha Nassar, Assistant Professor at the School of Middle Eastern and North African Studies,
University of Arizona.
"Superbly acted ... the end will leave you breathless and wondering." - E. Nina Rothe, Huffington Post
Young lovers Qays (Kais Nashef) and Layla (Maisa Abd Elhadi) are university students in the West Bank who hail from Khan Yunis in Gaza. He is pursuing a degree in literature and she in engineering, but they are forced to return home before completing their courses. In the more religious and traditional environment of Khan Yunis, their love story can continue only by marrying. Yet Qays, who is a construction worker living in a refugee camp, is too poor to convince Layla's father that he can provide for his beloved daughter. As the couple struggles to be together, Qays paints verses from the classical poem Majnun Layla all over Khan Yunis, a rebellious act that angers Layla's father and the local self-appointed moral police. Lyrical and passionate, Habibi depicts a reality where personal happiness must be weighed against society's opinions, and a choice sometimes made between one's people and one's heart.
(Susan Youssef, 2011, Palestine, 78 min., Not Rated) Digital Presentation