Jalila (Ruba Blal-Asfour), the head of a large household in a Bedouin village in the Negev desert of Israel, is besieged by emotions. Struggling to cover up her humiliation at being rejected while reluctantly participating in the required preparations for her husband’s second marriage to a much younger bride, Jalila privately fears the same fate for her own daughters.
Layla (Lamis Ammar), Jalila’s oldest, is a beautiful and self-confident university student who has fallen in love with one of her classmates. Aware that her husband, Sulimann (Haitham Omari), will not approve of her daughter’s affair, Jalila forbids 18-year-old Layla from seeing her lover again. But when Sulimann reacts more harshly than necessary and arranges a provincial undeserving groom for Layla, she takes up her daughter’s cause.
Director Elite Zexer delivers a riveting and hypnotic debut feature that offers viewers an intimate lens into the world of Bedouin women coming of age in contemporary Israel. This film, in Arabic with English subtitles, is the winner of six Ophir Awards (Israeli Oscars), the top prize at Locarno Film Festival’s First Look on Israel, and the World Cinema Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival. It was also an official selection of both the Berlinale and the Seattle International Film Festival.
The guest speakers at the film presentation will be Steve Dinero, the Carter and Fran Pierce Term Chair for the Liberal Arts at Philadelphia University, and Iris Drechsler (moderator), the PJFF artistic chair.
Special Event: Post-film happy hour at Positano Coast (212 Walnut Street, 2nd floor), with complimentary appetizers and drink specials
Buy tickets here.