GAZA CALLING (GAZA TONADI)
(Nahed Awwad, Palestinian Territory (Occupied), United Arab Emirates, Switzerland). 64 minutes. Rating: NNN Nahed Awwad’s study of Palestinians whose ability to travel between Gaza and Ramallah is constrained by arbitrary Israeli regulations won’t win any awards for production values, but it’s nevertheless a compelling portrait of families unfairly divided by one of the world’s most intractable conflicts.
As Samer seeks to return from Ramallah to his family in Gaza, and Mustafa tries to reunite with his in Ramallah, their only way of connecting to relatives is via telephone – hence the title. Though these conversations have their own heartbreaking quality, it’s the scenes portraying the bureaucratic tangle that are most infuriating – phone call after phone call, countless demands for documents, stacks of applications for permits.
An effective attempt to put a human face to political tensions. SGC Apr 30, 6:30 pm, ROM Theatre; May 2, 3:30 pm, Scotiabank Theatre 3; May 3, 6:30 pm, Innis Town Hall.