FOCUS ON is an adjunct section of the International Short Film Festival of Cisterna di Latina, dedicated to the film production of a specific country or region of the world. Its goal is to provide an in-depth understanding of works that reveal how historical and cultural traditions and lifestyles influence the form of contemporary artistic language. At the same time, it aims to engage foreign communities present in the area.

Focus On is a category that appeals to the audience, which has attracted interest and fostered fruitful collaborations since its introduction to the Cisterna Film Festival program in 2017.

For the 2023 edition, the Focus On section will be dedicated to Palestinian filmmakers, thanks to the collaboration of the Consulat Général de France à Jérusalem and the Palestinian Ministry of Culture. The Director of Cinema Department of the Ministry of Culture, Lina Bokhary, provided us with the following statement:

This year marks our 75th commemoration of the Nakba “the Palestinian Catastrophe of 1948”.

We take pride in celebrating our new and upcoming Palestinian filmmakers and their cinematic achievements through this fruitful and important partnership with Cisterna film Festival 2023 in its 9th edition.

Our filmmakers represent the Palestinian map; From Jerusalem to the West bank and Gaza, to the 1948 area and the diaspora.

They carry on the Palestinian film heritage and continue to explore and advance their creative cinematic language and style. Those Palestinian filmmakers and their work represent the richness and diversity that is Palestine. They are in dialogue with the Palestinian culture and identity and explore our diverse and special experiences as a people and nation.

We do hope that our Italian audience will enjoy this collection of Palestinian shorts and relate to its stories and the experiences”

Artistic Director Cristian Scardigno has selected the following shorts for the Focus On Palestine, which will be screened during the festival evenings from July 21st to 23rd at Palazzo Caetani:

Ayny – My Second Eye (Palestine, 2016, 11′) by Ahmad Saleh

Bethlehem 2001 (Palestine, 2020, 15′) by Ibrahim Handal

Bonboné (Palestine, 2017, 15′) by Rakan Mayasi

Palestine ’87 (Palestine, 2022, 13′) by Bilal Al Khatib