When I Saw You (Lamma Shof Tak)
Director: Annemarie Jacir
Cast: Mahmoud Asfa, Ruba Blal, Saleh Bakri
Language: Arabic with English subtitles
Country of Origin: Palestine, Jordan, Greece, UAE 2012 93 mins.
Winner Netpac Award Best Asia film 2013 Berlin International Film Festival, Palestinian 2013 Oscar Entry Best Foreign Language Film
Released by NEW WAVE FILMS
'A tender and poignant coming of age drama against a backdrop of political anger.'
Sixties London saw an explosion in fashion and music and an infectious sense of hope and change. A universal celebration of a new era. In Jordan in 1967, tens of thousands of refugees poured across the border from Palestine.
11-year old Tarek (Mahmoud Asfa), separated from his father in the chaos of war and his mother Ghaydaa (Ruba Blal), are amongst this latest wave of refugees placed in Harir, a 'temporary' refugee camp until they can return. They wait, like the generation before them who arrived in 1948. The free spirited Tarek longing to be reunited with his father, searches for a way out which leads him to a group of people, the Fedayee, Marxist Palestinian guerillas who will lead Tarek and Ghaydaa on a journey that will change their lives.
'When I saw You' isn't an incident filled feature film. It gently and effectively explores the main characters and the dilemma they're placed in after the Six Day War. There's is a desire to be free but they live in a fenced in ever lasting limbo.
Mahmoud Asfa's a revelation, a natural who brings to the screen Tarek, a boy with an innocent and adventurous curiosity thrust into a world of political anger who finds momentary freedom in a guerilla training camp.
A tender, poignant coming of age drama.