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Return to Homs
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Return to Homs
IDFA 2022

Return to Homs

Talal Derki
Syria, Germany
2013
87 min
n.a.
Festival history

Filmed between August 2011 and August 2013, this is a remarkably intimate portrait of a group of young revolutionaries in the city of Homs in western Syria. They dream of their country being free from President Bashar al-Assad and fight for justice through peaceful demonstrations. As the army acts ever more brutally and their city is transformed into a ghost town, the young men become armed insurgents.

The protagonists are two friends: Basset, the charismatic 19-year-old goalkeeper of the national soccer team whose revolutionary songs make him the voice of the protest movement in his neighborhood of Bayada, and the 24-year-old media activist and cameraman Ossama from the adjacent Khaldeeye neighborhood. The close-up camerawork takes the viewer right into the group.

Scenes of lively protest parties make way for panicking civilians on the run, followed by grim battles in a deserted city, and rising numbers of fallen loved ones. From time to time, the director makes a comment in voice-over: “The world is watching how we are getting killed one by one, while it remains silent as the grave.”

Credits
Director
Involved TV Channel
    SWR/ARTE,
    NHK,
    SVT,
    TSR
    SWR/ARTE,
    NHK,
    SVT,
    TSR
Screening copy
    Proaction Film
    Proaction Film
Distribution Benelux
    IDFA Bertha Fund
    IDFA Bertha Fund
World Sales
    Journeyman Pictures
    Journeyman Pictures

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