The Houston Palestine Film Festival/HPFF (www.HPFF.org) presents films occasionally throughout the year as well as their annual film festival, which will be onscreen two weekends this year – May 5 and 6 at The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (www.MFAH.org) and May 11–13 at Rice Cinema (www.ricecinema.rice.edu). One of only four such festivals in the United States, HPFF has been presenting their annual program since 2006. Their goal is to expose Houston audiences to Palestinian culture and identity through film – a worthy cause since it is through education and exposure that the history of Palestinians and the diaspora can be understood. HPFF is a non-political and non-religious organization.
The Festival opens with Raed Andoni’s documentary Ghost Hunting. A former political prisoner himself, Andoni assembles a group of former prisoners in an attempt to recreate the conditions of their imprisonment and chronicle their memories and strategies for survival. The opening weekend also features Wajib by Annemarie Jacir, which follows a father-son duo (Mohammad and Saleh Bakri) around Nazareth as they deliver wedding invitations to residents of their village.
The second weekend will include Mohanad Yaqubi’s Off Frame AKA Revolution Until Victory, bringing together recently discovered archival footage from the era of militant Palestinian filmmaking between 1968 to 1982, which showed the Palestinian struggle for self-determination and their attempt to document their history and narrative. Also on the schedule are Stitching Palestine by Carol Mansour and Muna Khalidi, a documentary that chronicles the memories and stories of Palestinian women living in the diaspora, as well as encore screenings of Ghost Hunting and Wajib.
HPFF will also screen the short documentaries Wa’ad (Promise) by Mohammad Shalodi and Visitation by Noor Abu Ghaniah, among others, as well as Measures of Distance, a video art piece by internationally acclaimed Palestinian artist Mona Hatoum, the first artist-in-residence at the Rice University Moody Center for the Arts in 2017.
WANT TO SEE MORE ART FILMS? CHECK OUT THESE VENUES
14 Pews (www.14pews.org)
Alamo Drafthouse (www.drafthouse.com)
Asia Society (www.asiasociety.org/texas)
Aurora Picture Show (www.aurorapictureshow.org)
Blaffer Art Museum (www.blafferartmuseum.org)
Café Brasil (www.brasilcafehouston.com)
Contemporary Arts Museum (www.camh.org)
Discovery Green (www.discoverygreen.com)
Holocaust Museum (www.hmh.org)
Jewish Community Center (www.erjcchouston.org)
Landmark River Oaks Theatre (www.landmarktheatres.com)
Menil Collection (www.menil.org)
Miller Outdoor Theatre (www.milleroutdoortheatre.com)
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (www.mfah.org/films)
Orange Show (www.orangeshow.org)
Rice Cinema (www.ricecinema.rice.edu)