ABOUT THE FILM
Ma’aloul is a Palestinian village in Galilee. In 1948, it was destroyed by the Isreali armed forces and its inhabitants expelled either to Lebanon or to the neighboring town of Nazareth. Ever since, the former inhabitants of Ma’aloul are only allowed to visit it once a year on the anniversary of Israel’s independence and have developed a tradition of organizing a picnic on this day on the very site of the destroyed village.
Michel Khleifi was born in Nazareth in 1950. In 1970 he traveled to Belgium where he studied television and theatre directing. Considered the founder of modern Palestinian cinema, Khleifi produced and directed several full-length features and documentaries for international release and broadcast. His previous documentary feature, Fertile Memory (1980), was the first Palestinian film to be shown at the Cannes FF and was a groundbreaking work, both on a political and aesthetic level, treating the struggle for women's freedom and emancipation, across the generations and under occupation, in a haunting lyrical style that became all his own.
Michel Khleifi -- Documentary, 30’ (Belgium: 1985)