Wednesday, April 26, 2023

Behind the Lines (2023) Vision Du Reel

BEHIND THE LINES is a portrait of Amani Al-Ali, the first female cartoonist in Idlib, Syria​. Her village is a strong hold of jihadists fighting President Assad. As we watch her draw images of life in her village she ponders how much longer she will be able to remain in her home.

Part of the Draw For Change series about female artists looking to make changes through their art, this is probably the most serious and important film in the series since  Amani is literally drawing matters of life and death. We are with her in her home and in her village which is on the front line. Assuming the bombs don't kill her what she draws could determine if she lives or dies.

This is a slice of life stripped of any sort of flash. We are going through the days and life of Amani and all that entails. Its a low key affair that is going to please  wants to know what life is really like in Syria. This is not people going and doing all over the place , but simply being at home drawing and trying to stay out of harms way. Its a film that is very different than most other films that are structured with large emotional arcs.

While I completely understand that some people are not going to like this owing to the structure and pacing, I fell into it and was delighted at seeing a side of things we don't normally see.


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