FARHA (2022) – written and directed by Darin J Sallam, running time 92 minutes
Farha is a teenage girl in 1948 Palestine. She and her friends are glad to see the British troops leave, but then the Israelis attack their village. Farha’s father hides her and from her hiding-place she witnesses some of the atrocities of the Nakba before escaping. This upsetting film is available to view on Netflix despite a campaign by supporters of Israel against it.
FORAGERS (2022) – Director Jumana Manna, running time 64 minutes.
Israeli ‘nature protection laws’ attempt to prevent Palestinians from their traditional harvesting of wild plants such as the herb za’atar and the artichoke-like ‘akkoub. This film uses fiction and archive material to show the dramas that arise from this clash of cultures, from the chases between the foragers and the Israeli nature patrol, to courtroom defences, A short trailer is HERE.
ALAM (2022) – Director Firas Khoury, running time 109 minutes.
Tamer (Mahmood Bakri) is a Palestinian teenager living in Israel, and his friends as he comes to grips with his fraught heritage. The arrival of an outspoken classmate, Maysaa (Sereen Khass), catalyses Tamer’s political awakening, as he agrees to take part in a mysterious flag operation on the eve of Israel’s Independence Day which is a mourning day for Palestinians.
THE PRESENT (2020) – Director Farah Nabulsi, running time 24 minutes
A Palestinian man in the West Bank takes his young daughter to buy a fridge as a present for his wife. They have to go through a checkpoint and – now with the fridge – back through the checkpoint. You have to watch to the end! Available on Netflix, this film won the 2021 BAFTA award for Best Short Film and was nominated for an Oscar that year.
GAZA (2019) – Directors Garry McKeane and Andrew McConnell, running time 93 minutes.
With stunning photography and high grade colour, this feature length observational documentary depicts a people plagued by conflict but not defined by it. Through the people we follow, we hear personal stories and gain a nuanced understanding of what life is like for Gaza’s citizens. The film has a ’15’ certificate.
SAMOUNI ROAD (2018) – Director Stefano Savona, running time 129 minutes.
A documentary following a small community of farmers about to celebrate a wedding on the outskirts of Gaza City. It’s going to be the first celebration since the last war. Amal, Fuad, their brothers and their cousins have lost their parents, their houses and their olive trees. The neighbourhood where they live is being rebuilt. As they replant trees and plough fields, they face their most difficult task: piecing together their own memory. The film won the Cannes Gold Eye Prize.
FIVE BROKEN CAMERAS (2012) – Directors Emad Bornat and Guy Davidi, running time 90 minutes.
This Oscar-nominated film documents the struggle in Bil’in against the Israeli apartheid wall. Each of the five cameras is broken as Emad Bornat films the regular protests. The pictures of the night raids and detention of young people by Israeli soldiers are particularly chilling. But the resistance is alive and well. Reviewed HERE.
DEFIENDO MI TIERRA (2012) – Director Shai Carmeli Pollak, running time 52 minutes
Another documentary about the resistance of the people of Bilin to the Israeli occupation. If you don’t speak Spanish the images are stil compelling. Watch it HERE.
OCCUPATION 101 (2006) – Directors: Abdallah Omeish, Sufyan Omeish, running time 88 minutes.
A thought-provoking and powerful documentary film on the current and historical root-causes of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It covers the first wave of Jewish immigration from Europe in the 1880′s and continues through to the 2005 Israeli withdrawal from Gaza. The film details life under Israeli military rule, the role of the United States in the conflict and the major obstacles that stand in the way of a lasting and viable peace. Watch it HERE.
AVE MARIA (2015) – Director Basil Khalil, running time 14 minutes
The silent routine of five nuns living on the West Bank is shattered when a family of Israeli settlers crash into the convent wall. The film is somewhere between sitcom and satire and was nominated for the 2016 Oscars in the ‘short film’ category. A short background review is HERE.
THE IRON WALL (2006) – running Time 52 mins
This documentary film is one of the clearest expositions of the Israeli settlement policy in the West Bank. The facts on the ground are clearly seen – the demolition of Palestinian homes and olive groves, the construction of illegal settlements, the illegal wall and infrastructure for the use of Jews only, and the settler terrorism against the Palestinian people. This film is ideal for people who perhaps thought the Palestinian/Israeli conflict was too complicated to understand and who want a clear, factual account with film evidence and accounts of Israeli settlers, soldiers and analysts as well as Palestinian farmers and academics. See a four-minute preview HERE.
BETHLEHEM – HIDDEN FROM VIEW (2008) – running time 30 minutes.
Trapped behind a 25-foot separation wall, for the Palestinians of the Bethlehem area life is devastated by what amounts to imprisonment. This film looks at what is happening to Bethlehem and its neighbour Hebron, seen through the eyes of Palestinians and Israelis, including Jeff Halper, Naim Ateek, Yehuda Shual and Mitri Raheb. Watch a 2-minute clip HERE.
FROM BALFOUR TO BANKSY (2020) – Director Martin Buckley, running time 71 minutes
Documentary showing a wide range of views from occupied Palestine,with the aim to discover the long-term effects of the British Empire’s colonialist enterprises. “we question the actions of Israel on occupied Palestinian land, and its discriminatory policies towards Palestinians in general.” Watch it all HERE
JERUSALEM – EAST SIDE STORY (2008) – Director: Mohammed Alatar, running time 57 minutes.
In 1948 the Western part of Jerusalem fell under Israeli control; in 1967 the Eastern part fell under Israeli occupation. Since then, Israel has pursued a policy of ‘Judaizing’ the city, aiming to achieve Jewish demographic superiority. Part of this policy is to drive Palestinian Muslims and Christians out of the city. The film includes interviews with Palestinian and Israeli leaders, human rights activists and political analysts.
Watch a 10-minute clip HERE.
THE LAND SPEAKS ARABIC (2007) – Director: Maryse Gargour, running time 61 minutes.
In this documentary the late 19th century birth of Zionism—and its repercussions for Palestinians—is detailed with original source documents, Zionist leaders’ quotations, rare archival footage, testimonies of witnesses and interviews with historians. All help to illustrate that the expulsion of the indigenous Arab population from Palestine was far from an accidental result of the 1948 war. This award-winning film shines a spotlight on the ethnic cleansing of Palestine by the Zionist movement. Watch it HERE.
TO SHOOT AN ELEPHANT (2009) – Directors: Alberto Arce/Mohammad Rujailah, Script: Alberto Arce/Miquel Marti Freixas, running time 112 minutes.
An eye-witness account from The Gaza Strip on December 27th, 2008 and the start of the Israeli Operation Cast Lead. 21 days of urgent, insomniac, dirty, shuddering images from the only foreigners who decided and managed to stay embedded inside Gaza strip ambulances, with Palestinian civilians.
Watch it HERE (with its alternative title Erased – wiped off the map)
BUDRUS (2010) – running time 82 minutes
This film documents the struggle of a West Bank village to resist the incursion of the Israeli apartheid wall. It is an uplifting account of non-violent protest that achieves its objective. Watch a trailer HERE.
AL NAKBA: The Palestinian Catastrophe 1948 (1997) – Director: Benny Brunner, running time 58 minutes.
This documentary tackles the historic events that led to 750.000 Palestinians becoming refugees at the end of the first Israeli-Arab war of 1948. Based on Israeli historian Benny Morris’ book “The birth of the Palestinian refugee problem, 1947-49″.
GAZA IN CONTEXT (2016) – Arab Studies Institute, running time 20 minutes
GAZA FIGHTS FOR FREEDOM (2019) – director Abby Martin, running time 1 hour 24 minutes
Feature documentary on the struggles in Gaza. Watch it free on youtube HERE.
You will also find a number of films listed on the PSC website page ‘Films about Palestine’ HERE.