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Master in Focus: Jocelyne Saab

Lyrical and uncompromising, the films of Jocelyne SAAB (1948-2019) are at once landmark works of Lebanese cinema and masterpieces of the essay film form. The poetic voiceovers of her movies recall Chris MARKER, and her fragmented, diaristic images are reminiscent of Jonas MEKAS. But SAAB’s poetic vision, and her intimate interactions with the displaced, the exiled, and the voiceless, mark her films as uniquely her own. Trained as a radio and television journalist, SAAB turned her attention to nonfiction films in the wake of the Lebanese Civil War. Her epic, impressionistic trilogy of documentaries about Beirut chronicles a moment at which a kind of bitter poetry has replaced the carelessness of the past. She later moved on to make fiction films, photography and installations, and founded the Cultural Resistance International Film Festival of Lebanon in 2013.

Once Upon a Time in Beirut

1994 Lebanon, France DCP 100min


2005 Egypt, Lebanon, France DCP 107min

Beirut, Never Again

1976 Lebanon DCP 35min

Letter from Beirut

1978 Lebanon DCP 48min

Beirut My City

1982 Lebanon DCP 37min