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Cannes Market Dailies

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Five-Minute Standing Ovation For Documentary FOR SAMA

Last night, the documentary film For Sama, received a five-minute standing ovation. The film documents the life of Waad Al-Kateab and her husband, Hamza Al-Kateab as they fight for their freedom during the Syrian revolution. It covers the revolution from when it started at the University of Aleppo to when it ended and how both Waad and Hamza fight to save lives at the hospital they created together. The film is a love letter to their daughter, Sama, who was born during the revolution and shows the struggle of Waad’s motherhood as she has to decide between leaving her city Aleppo to give her daughter a safe life, or to continue to fight for freedom to help save the lives of the people. Although the film was heart-wrenching, it really opened the audience's eyes to the kinds of lives these people, who live in areas of conflict, live. Both Waad and Hamza were in attendance as well as the other director Edward Watts for a Q&A after the screening. In one of the questions, a woman stated that she “thought the film was one-sided,” however, Watts retorted with, “the only side the film shows is the side of humanity.” Hamza also added, “the only side we did not show was the perspective of the Russians in the planes dropping the bombs.” Other than the one controversial comment made by the women in the audience, the film was well received. Films like these are very important because they show a side to the world that is sometimes hidden to someone living in a more western country. We need more diverse stories and perspectives because it helps us understand one another. If we can understand each other then we are one step closer to working together to solve some of the worlds biggest issues. 

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