12 Palestinian Films That Will Open Your Eyes

Art has become one of the greatest forms of modern storytelling and healing. For the Palestinian community in particular, films have offered a platform for their narrative to be told, while reminiscing  about “ayam el 3ezz“. Here are 12 Palestinian films that will make you laugh, cry and long for the Holy land.

‘5 Broken Cameras’


This Emmy-nominated film will take you on the emotional journey of one Palestinian father who, along with the resilience of the village of Bilin, has to push back the apartheid wall. P.S. this film will make you want to name your son Gibreel!

‘The Time That Remains’


From the cinematic mastermind of Elia Suleiman comes the tale of the creation of the apartheid state and struggle to maintain indigenous Palestinian culture.

‘When I Saw You’


This tearjerker tells follows a young Palestinian refugee as he returns to his homeland in pursuit of finding his father.



Ajami, named after the thriving neighborhood in Yaffa, follows five stories of Palestinian Christians and Muslims as they face life as Arabs living under a Jewish occupation.

‘A Stone’s Throw From Prison’


While Israeli forces have arrested thousands of children (yes, children) over the years, this documentary takes a glimpse into the difficult healing process Palestinian children have to face when they reenter society after life in prison.



Escaping from an ugly divorce in Ramallah, a single mom and her son immigrate to America and attempt to find a place in a foreign land that finds their background extremely foreign.

‘Paradise Now’


Suicide bombers get a humanized narrative, which earned the film 15 nominations and 13 wins internationally.

‘Slingshot Hip Hop’


Finding healing through the arts is common among Palestinians, but one group of young men took to an unexpected form of expression when they picked up mics and turned their love for hip hop into an avenue for translating their struggle.

‘Flying Paper’


Determined to escape the harsh reality of living in the besieged Gaza Strip, Palestinian children set out to break the Guinness World Record for most kites flown.

‘Rana’s Wedding’


Rana’s wedding crosses checkpoints and interfaith love in a tale of Palestinian Catch-22.



Young, in love, and in pursuit of a better life, Omar faces hardships imposed on him by the occupation and a Israeli system determined to turn him against his people.


‘The Salt of This Sea’


A film all Palestinians living in the diaspora can relate to, Annemarie Jacir, tells the tale of a young woman from Brooklyn returning to her homeland to take what is rightfully hers.

Did we miss your favorite Palestinian film? Let us know at samarwrites@gmail.com.

Originally published on Scoop Empire December 8, 2015


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