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March 28th – April 2nd, 2017 / Cinema Muzeul Țăranului & Cinema Elvire Popesco / the 7th edition

9 DAYS - FROM MY WINDOW IN ALEPPO

Directed by: 
FLOOR VAN DER MEULEN, THOMAS VROEGE, ISSA TOUMA
13'
Cinema Elvire Popesco - Wednesday, March 29, 2017 - 21:00
Cinema Muzeul Țăranului - Friday, March 31, 2017 - 21:00
Written by: 
Issa Touma
Cinematography: 
Issa Touma
Sound: 
Tom Jansen
Producer: 
Jos de Putter
Production: 
Deepfocus Webdocs & Paradox
With the support of

Raw footage shot from a window, hastily made photographs and a voice over narration reconstructed post-factum from diary notes paint a gruelling picture of a war in first person. Awarded the Best Short Film Prize by the European Film Academy, 9 Days  From My Window in Aleppo is a harrowing documentary that counters the romanticized view on the Syrian Civil War as presented by the Western press. Through minimalistic means, Syrian photographer Issa Touma, at the same time filming and being filmed, shows how a warfare becomes an integral part of the normalcy of everyday life. As gunshots rattle freely from the window, art becomes the only remaining survival mechanism. (Diana Mereoiu, BIEFF 2017)
Director: 

Floor van der Meulen, Thomas Vroege, Issa Touma

Floor van der Meulen studied Audiovisual Design at the Willem de Kooning Academy in Rotterdam and graduated in 2012. Her graduation film You & I was shown in multiple festivals in Europe. Her 2014 documentary feature debut Paradijsbestormers premiered at DokLeipzig.

Thomas Vroege graduated from Sint Joost Academy of Arts. His graduation documentary short, The Son & The Stranger won the Wildcard award from The Netherlands Film Fund, and was followed by the poetic documentary So Help Me God (2015).

Aleppo-based photographer Issa Touma established the Le Pont gallery and photography workshop in 1996, and a year later started the International Photography Festival Aleppo. His work can be found in international collections, including the Victoria & Albert Museum, London.

Contact: 
fvdmeulen8[at]hotmail[dot]com, mail[at]thomasvroege[dot]nl, lepont.aleppo[at]yahoo[dot]com
Festivals, awards: 
  • Best Short Film at the European Film Awards 2016
  • International Film Festival Rotterdam 2016
  • Best Short Film Award - BFI London 2016
  • Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival 2016
  • Special Merit for Documentary & Honorable Mention International Competition - Tampere 2016
  • DokLeipzig 2015
  • Winterthur International Short Film Festival 2015
  • GoShort Nijmegen 2016
  • VIS Vienna Shorts 2016
  • Hamburg International Short Film Festival 2016
  • DokuFest Kosovo 2016
  • New Directors New Films - The Museum of Modern Art MoMA 2016
  • Gent Film Festival 2016
  • Uppsala International Short Film Festival 2016
  • São Paolo International Short Film Festival 2016
Curatorial comment:
When Syrian photographer Issa Touma decided to pick up his camera and film events from his window in Aleppo, he did not know whether he would be alive to finish the filming. Not only does his documentary show what one person, one camera and a restricted view of an alleyway can do to reveal something as complex, confusing, and terrifying as a civil war, but it also demonstrates the power of film to reach the wider world, and make those of us more fortunate re-assess the freedom we take for granted. (British Film Institute statement)