Full of ghosts and memories, Ghassan Salhab’s debut feature film is set in the late 1980s, towards the end of Lebanon’s Civil War. Protagonist Khalil returns to Beirut under a new identity, and to a confrontation with those he left behind following his apparent death a decade earlier. Featuring documentary elements and interviews with the lead actors, Phantom Beirut is a haunting exploration of the official silences and collective amnesias that stalk the lives of those who live through conflict.
The first of two screening programmes animating the work of Basma al-Sharif, BFMAF24 Filmmaker in Focus.
Born stateless and of Palestinian heritage, her work explores cyclical political histories and conflicts. In films and installations that move backward and forward in history, between place and non-place, she confronts the legacy of colonialism through satirical, immersive, and lyrical works.
Two films set in liminal spaces of exile. In the wake of dispossession, when dreams are deferred and memories bring pain, small acts of collective speaking generate new threads of resistance, liberation, and hope.