The Center for Arabic Culture Film Screening Program
Spring 2015 Film Screenings
Beverages, snacks and Middle Eastern sweets will be served
The CAC will be celebrating Lebanese Singer Fairuz and the Rahbani Brothers:
Assi and Mansour Rahbani were Lebanese composers who rose to fame throughout the last half of the twentieth century. For nearly three decades they collaborated with legendary singer Fairouz, known as the Jewel of Lebanon. The trio revolutionized the standard for Arab music with the three-minute song (when most were twenty minutes long at the time) and more complex lyrics. Their work ranged from songs about youth and love to musicals that experimented with political satire.
Their musical content generally refrained from taking political stances, often presenting a pan-Arab philosophy. During the Lebanese Civil War their music was actually used in propaganda by both sides. In a country that had only recently gained independence by their first collaboration in 1951, Fairouz and the Rahbani brothers were credited with molding Lebanese identity. Perhaps the most internationally famous Lebanese musicians, Fairouz and the Rahbani brothers produced 19 musicals in 20 years.
Bayya3 al-Khawatem (Rings for Sale)
Friday January 23, 2015 – 6:30 pm
In a first attempt to make a feature film out of a widely acclaimed musical, “Bayya3 al-Khawatem” was shot in the Lebanese countryside echoing the songs and music that were first heard on stage.
This film is about a small village where the young people are preparing for an annual festival in which many will choose spouses. The mayor of the village, who has a niece named Rima, decides that the villagers are too bored and need to have their imagination stimulated. He invents and tells stories about a fictitious person named Rabi’, describing him as an enemy of the village. Then two idlers in the village start to steal, damage property, and so forth, while putting the blame on Rabi’. Things look even worse when a tall, strong stranger enters the village, says that his name is Rabi’, and asks Rima where he can find the village’s mayor.
Bint al-Hares (Daughter of the Watchman)
Friday February 27, 2015 – 6:30 pm
Bint al-Hares is a love story that grows between a village girl called Rima and an outsider. Her father, the village watchman, who claims to watch after the comings and goings of all the village affairs, is blind to his daughter’s interest in the stranger. The songs of this film celebrate the Lebanese landscape as they portray the merry aspect of village life.
Safar Barlek (The Exile)
Friday March 27, 2015 – 6:30 pm
The events of this film take place in Lebanon prior to World War I when most of the Arab countries were under the domination of the Ottoman Empire. These were very difficult days for the local population who had to endure injustice and cruelty, their crops confiscated to feed the army and young men recruited by force into the invaders’ army. If they tried to avoid recruitment and were caught they were sent into exile, hence the title of the film. The fight against oppression is fully illustrated in the film and told in the songs and music.
Join us for these great events at the CAC – 191 Highland Avenue, Unit 6B, Somerville, MA
Free and open to the public!