A legendary Lion roars at Arabic Film Festival
Be aware that the first Dublin Arabic Film Festival is continuing at the Light House and other venues over the weekend. The event offers an eclectic array of art-house fare and more populist entertainment. Seek out Ahmad Abdalla’s Rags & Tatters, a story of the Arab Spring (6pm today) and Mohamed Hamidi’s Homeland, a more light-hearted Algerian drama (8.40 pm tomorrow).
The hot ticket, however, must surely be the screening of Moustapha Akkad’s legendary Lion of Desert at 1pm on Sunday. Largely financed by the Gaddafi regime, the 1981 epic stars Anthony Quinn as Omar Mukhtar, the Bedouin leader who organised resistance to Mussolini’s Italian invaders. Rod Steiger plays Il Duce.
Following the film, Jim Sheridan, president of the festival, will talk to Jim Swire, whose daughter died in the Lockerbie bombing, about issues relating to that case. Sheridan recently confirmed that he is developing a film on the controversial atrocity.
“It’s scary what they didn’t reveal to us at the time,” Sheridan said recently. “It doesn’t really matter, the people are dead and you can’t bring them back to life. But in the future we need clear investigations of these things, or else you’re going to end up with flight MH370.”
Mr Swire met Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, the only man convicted of the bombing, before his death and has described the case against him as “rubbish”.
Details of the Dublin Arabic Film Festival, which is presented by Dubai Duty Free, can be found at dublinarabicfilmfestival.ie.
Being a Bedouin: Anthony Quinn in Lion of the Desert