In Syria

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Lebanon | 2017 | 85 minutes | Philippe Van Leeuw

In a Syrian city under siege, a mother of three (Hiam Abbass) is barricaded inside her apartment and fights to protect her family and her neighbors from the raging war outside, in this tense drama where every decision is a matter of life or death.

Friday, May 19, 2017

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  • Matinee

SIFF Cinema Uptown

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Sunday, May 21, 2017

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SIFF Cinema Uptown

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Hiam Abbass (May in the Summer, SIFF 2014) turns in a powerhouse performance as Oum Yazan, a Syrian woman trying to protect her household from the war that is raging just beyond her doors. Barricaded inside the apartment are her elderly father-in-law, her young son, two daughters, their teenage friend, a housemaid, and a young neighbor couple with a baby. Under siege, they try to approximate some kind of normalcy despite the most abnormal circumstances. Outside their building in an increasingly deserted city, bombs are falling, invisible snipers target anyone they see, and armed men fight their battles street by street. As these dangers draw ever closer, every decision could be a matter of life or death, forcing difficult moral choices in the struggle to survive. Director Philippe Van Leeuw (The Day God Walked Away) and the cast-all of whom come from war-torn countries, including Syria-have publicly discussed their intentions in making this film: to share with the world what life is like for ordinary Syrians. This intimate drama does just that, revealing the personal stories too often eclipsed by the headlines of geopolitical crisis.

Director Biography

Philippe Van Leeuw made his directorial debut in 2009 with The Day God Walked Away, which took home the Grand Prix award at the Bratislava International Film Festival. His second feature, In Syria, has already won two awards at the Berlin International Film Festival.

Sponsored by KCTS 9

  • Director: Philippe Van Leeuw
  • Principal Cast: Hiam Abbass, Diamand Abou Abboud, Juliette Navis, Mohsen Abbas, Moustapha Al Kar, Alissar Kaghadou, Ninar Halabi, Mohammas, Jihad Sleik
  • Premiere Status: North American
  • Country: Lebanon, France, Belgium
  • Year: 2017
  • Running Time: 85 minutes
  • Producer: Guillaume Malandrin, Serge Zeitoun
  • Screenplay: Philippe Van Leeuw
  • Cinematographers: Virginie Surdej
  • Editors: Gladys Joujou
  • Music: Jean-Luc Fafchamps
  • Website: Official Film Website
  • Awards: Berlin Film Festival 2017 (Panorama Audience Award)
  • Filmography: The Day God Walked Away (2009)
  • Language: Arabic
  • Has Subtitles: Yes
  • Format: DCP
  • US Distributor: Film Movement
  • International Sales: Films Boutique