I Signed the Petition

  • Mahdi Fleifel
  • United Kingdom, Germany, Switzerland
  • 2018
  • 10 min
  • Dutch Premiere
  • IDFA Competition for Short Documentary

One morning in Berlin, the filmmaker accidentally wakes his friend in England with a phone call, because he’s worried. The previous evening, he signed a petition for a cultural boycott of Israel, but was that actually such a good idea? As a Palestinian, he’s already treated with suspicion. Despite being half awake, his friend embarks on a lucid monologue; in just a few minutes, he brilliantly analyzes the fear, alienation and powerlessness of the filmmaker. As Palestinians in exile, they don’t have the luxury of keeping a distance, he says. “You’re already in it, do you know what I mean? Whether or not you sign a piece of paper doesn’t actually matter.”

The camera roams shakily around a sunny room somewhere in Berlin, one minute focusing on the window, the next on an empty corner. The grainy images suggest that the person behind the camera isn’t really there, but somewhere else.


  • 10 min
  • color
  • DCP
  • Spoken languages: English
  • Subtitles in: English
Mahdi Fleifel
Patrick Campbell / Nakba Filmworks, Mahdi Fleifel / Nakba Filmworks
Mahdi Fleifel
Michael Aaglund
Sound Design
Dario Swade

IDFA history

Dutch Premiere
IDFA Competition for Short Documentary

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IDFA history

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