The Film Festival will be organized at the 2017 Annual ISNA convention on Friday, Saturday and Sunday (June 30 – July 3, 2017). The selected movies and documentaries will be played at the convention. Producers and directors will be given an opportunity to talk about the movie as well as to answer questions from the attendees.
This year’s Film Festival films:
The Muslims I Know
An insightful film that came out in 2008 that takes form as a dialogue between American Muslims and Non-Muslims. The documentary adventures into the past and present lives of Muslims living in America after 9-11. The events of 9/11 created much interest in Islam and Muslims. Mainstream media responded to this demand for information with sweeping generalizations and easy stereotypes. America’s small community of Muslims longs to be a part of that discourse. This documentary gives them a chance to be heard and understood, through dialogue with non-Muslim Americans.
Mr. Jinnah: The making of Pakistan
“(Jinnah) spent much of his life fighting for a kind of Islam which shows respect for law, for the rights of women and the minorities- things which the Prophet Muhammed himself insisted upon.” – The Independent (London).
This year marks the 20th anniversary of the documentary film Mr. Jinnah: The Making of Pakistan, about Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan, by Ambassador Akbar S. Ahmed, who the BBC has called “the world’s leading authority on contemporary Islam.” Mr. Jinnah is a unique and important film that tells the remarkable story of how the largest Muslim nation in the world at the time was created almost single-handedly by one man, who became the first Asian head of state in modern postcolonial history. Mr. Jinnah is an intimate portrait featuring interviews with numerous figures such as Jinnah’s daughter, who is interviewed for the first time, and Jinnah’s private secretary. The film also contains historic footage that had never before been aired. Given the current India- Pakistan tensions, this is the ideal time to screen this, which has never before been shown in the United States, and introduce it to a new generation.
Arctic Mosque and Letter to a Terrorist
- Arctic Mosque – A little prefabricated mosque makes its way across the trials and beauty of the Canadian landscape in a celebrated and unprecedented 4000 km (2500 mile) journey by road and river from the prairie city of Winnipeg to the small arctic town of Inuvik. As the northernmost mosque in the western hemisphere establishes its roots in the Arctic permafrost, so do the small yet eclectic community of Inuvik Muslims who carve out a unique Canadian identity as they find friendship and a home amongst some of the oldest cultural communities in Canada.
- Letter to a Terrorist – “As a Muslim, the trauma of our time weighs heavily on my heart. How to respond? What to say? I don’t know. All I know is what I feel. So I made this film.” A short film in the figurative form of a letter written to a terrorist, conveying the feelings of Muslims around the world during our current day and age.
A multi-narrative journey that weaves between three families in present-day Bradford, where three worlds collide and leave a Muslim scholar fighting for his life. Yusif, the son of Mosque scholar Rehman, is doing his best to keep his dad’s dream at arm’s length. Zac is from a White working class family whose troubles hit fifth gear due to his radical behavior. Khadija is second generation Iraqi and a recent graduate in Politics whose ambitions are about to be put to the test. Fueled by yet another grooming case making the headlines, they must face the storm before the calm – and they call it ‘Islamophobia
Short Films Segment
Waiting at the Door
A glimpse into the lives of Syrian refugees in Jordan and their ability to rebuild hope despite having lost almost everything. Take a look inside the worlds most populated refugee camp and explore initiatives run by refugees helping other refugees adjust to their new lives in this short piece.
Leila goes about her daily life just like everyone else, but she carries an indescribable burden wherever she goes. Leila’s fiancé is trapped in war torn Syria and every letter she has sent to him has been bounced back. Battling between keeping up hope and giving up, Leila must choose one or the other before it’s too late.
Tea is the most consumed beverage in the world after water, and Kenya is the largest exporter of it. Meet a small Kenyan family who runs an independent tea farm that produces the tea leaves before then traveling to London to meet the manager of a tea company. While both may be worlds apart, they agree on one thing: Tea is a beverage that can unite the world.
Strangers in the Night
It is amazing how two strangers lives can cross at any given moment by the will of Allah (swt). At 3am in a department store, two men walk up and down the aisles talking about their lives and reflecting on the lessons they’ve learned along the way in a both serious yet comical way. While both their lives are separate worlds, for a brief twenty minutes, it seems as if they’ve been friends for years.
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