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THIRST (Atash)

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THIRST (Atash)

Director: Tawfik Abu Wael
Israel/Palestine   |   2004   |   110 minutes
Arabic, with subtitles in English
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$24.95

FILM INFORMATION

Synopsis After one of his daughters "shamed" him, Abu Shukri brought his family to the edge of nowhere, to scratch out a living by burning wood to make charcoal. When he decided that the family would build a pipeline to bring in running water, he set off a chain of events that alters life irrevocably. A masterfully shot tale of repression and control in a harsh landscape that examines the dynamic of power within a family stretched to the breaking point. Working with a cast of first-time actors, director Tawfik Abu Wael crafts a story that is both archetypal and yet deeply rooted in the social conflicts of the Middle East.

About the Director Tawfik Abu Wael was born in the Palestinian town of Um El-Fahim in Israel, in 1976. He graduated from Tel Aviv University, where he studied film directing, and worked in the film archive from 1996 to 1998. He taught drama at the Hassan Arafe School in Jaffa from 1997 to 1999. His previous works include the shorts Bread (1997), Hashish and the Moon (1997), and Diary of a Male Whore (2000), and the documentary Waiting for Sallah El-Din (2001). Thirst is his first feature film, it won the FIPRESCI Prize at the 2004 Cannes International Film Festival.

Available Screening Formats 35mm, DVD

Click here for Non-Theatrical & Exhibition screening information

Featured in the Global Lens 2006 film series.



Global Lens 2006 Trailer
CAST:

Abu Shukri (the father) - Hussein Yassin Mahjane
Shukri (the son) - Ahamad Abed el Gani
Amal (the mother) - Amal Bweerat
Gamila (the older daughter) - Roba Blal
Halima (the younger daughter) - Jamila Abu Hussein

CREW:

Director - Tawfik Abu Wael
Assistant Director - S habtaï Yitzhak
Producer - Avi Kleinberger
Associate Producer - Baher Agbariya
Screenwriter - Tawfik Abu Wael
Cinematographer - Assaf Sudry
Editor - Galit Shaked-Shaul
Production Designer - Boaz Katzenelson
Sound - Ronen Nagel, Oded Ruskin
Music - Wissam M. Gibran
REVIEWS

"This film is a rare achievement of creating a contemporary tragedy with sharp and clear story lines, avoiding the use of folklore, sentiment, or fascination with the exotic...The aesthetic unity creates a hermetic world, and the beauty of the naked wilderness is accompanied by the economic, sparse dialogue and the unique use of silences, which reveals the pressure and feelings stifling the characters."-Jerusalem Film Festival

"Atash is a beautifully lensed film. Abu Wael displays a visual bravado, suggesting a talent to watch for the future."-The Daily Star

"Thirst shows a thoroughly Palestinian sensibility and showcases a strong new talent in first-time director Tawfik Abu Wael. Its expressive use of imagery and acting have real power. Amazingly, all the actors are non-pros. Assaf Sudry’s widescreen cinematography turns the dusty valley into a place of mythic dimensions, while bathing the characters in expressive shadows. The smoke and flames of infernally burning stacks of woods add further angst.”-Variety

“Abu Wael is definitely worth watching. First for the judicious choice of his cast, none of them professional, who are remarkably expressive, but also for his visual flair, his use of locations and, most of all, his courageous moral attitude.” -Screen International

FESTIVALS & AWARDS

2004
FIPRESCI Prize, CANNES FILM FESTIVAL
Special Jury Prize, PARIS BIENNALE OF ARAB CINEMA
Best Cinematography, AWARDS OF THE ISRAELI FILM ACADEMY
Wolgin Award, Best Israeli Feature, JERUSALEM INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
VANCOUVER INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL

2005
CAMBRIDGE FILM FESTIVAL
CHICHESTER FILM FESTIVAL
INDEPENDENT FILM FESTIVAL ISTANBUL
INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL ROTTERDAM
TIMES BFI LONDON FILM FESTIVAL

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