Monday, February 16, 2009

The One Man Village by Simon El Habre

The One Man Village - Trailer

A Feature Documentary by Simon El Habre

Semaan is a farmer leading a quiet life, in the small village of Aïn El Halazoun, in the Lebanese mountains. He wakes up at the crack of dawn, tends to his cows and other animals and prepares the produce he will sell at the market

During the Lebanese civil war (1975-1990), Aïn el Halazoun was completely destroyed and eventually deserted. Its original inhabitants, all from the El Habre family, regularly go back to the village to visit their houses and cultivate their plots of land, but they always leave before sunset.

By observing life in a quasi ghost village, the film reflects upon collective and individual memory, in a country whose inhabitants seem unwilling to learn from their past, even while on the brink of a new civil war.

From ODE Magazine -
Semaan Bilda’ia: A Glimpse at Peace
"Sometimes a film can make a difference. I just saw this one at Berlinale. Wow! [...]