THE LARK FARM (Paolo and Vittorio Taviani, 2007)

Monotonously though intermittently marvelously underlit, the Taviani brothers’ La masseria delle allodole, from the novel by Antonia Arslan, addresses the horrific events that erupted in the Ottoman Empire between 1915 and 1917. This film’s dark demeanor refers, symbolically, to two things: first, the self-delusion of the Avakians, a high-toned Armenian family that ignores the signs […]

A NEW DAY IN OLD SANA’A (Bader Ben Hirsi, 2005)

Exquisitely photographed (by Lebanon’s Muriel Aboulrouss), writer-director Bader Ben Hirsi’s A New Day in Old Sana’a (best Arab film, Cairo), a joint venture of Yemen and the United Kingdom, has been touted as the first feature ever from Yemen. Ben Hirsi, a former documentarian, has succeeded in exploiting the mysterious beauty of Sana’a, Yemen’s ancient […]