Kamel lives with his brother and sister-in-law at the edge of the Negev desert on land that has been in their Bedouin family since the Ottoman Empire. But since they have no paperwork to prove their ownership, their claim is disputed by the Israeli government. state officials eventually hand down an order for demolition of the family’s few small shacks. These stresses take the toll on the family, exacerbating existing tensions. Kamel, serves as a security guard at a central bus station. Khaled resents his brother’s willingness to work for the very government that is causing their problems, despite his reliance on Kamel’s income. When they try to appeal the demolition order, even the Bedouin Authority office advises them to accept compensation and abandon their land. The situation seems hopeless, until Kamel comes up with a plan.
NIF Film Club discussed this film with NIF’s VP of Public Engagement Libby Lenkinski and director Ami Livne.
Watch the film at your own convenience by streaming it on Vimeo
Ami Livne is a writer, director, and producer based in Tel Aviv. He graduated from the Beit-Berl College Film Department in 2003. Sharqiya, his debut feature film, premiered at the Berlinale Panorama 2012, Cannes-ACID programme 2012, and Jerusalem Film Festival 2012, winning 3 Awards including Best Feature Film. The film was distributed commercially in Israel and France. Since 2014, Ami has been working for Laila Films and is involved in all the company’s projects such as feature films, documentary films and TV drama series.