Director(s): Lotfy Nathan
Film description: When his father dies, Ali has to take care of his two younger sisters in a house from which they will soon be evicted. Faced with this sudden responsibility and the injustices he is confronted with, Ali awakens to anger and revolt.
Programmers notes: One of the most exciting surprises to spring from the Baltimore film scene in recent years is the return of Lotfy Nathan, director of the iconic Bmore documentary 12 O’Clock Boys, with his first narrative feature—one made in Tunisia and premiered at the Cannes Film Festival, no less.
Employing a neo-realist approach at once gritty and humanist, Nathan artfully recalls such films as Jafar Panahi’s Crimson Gold, Ramin Bahrani’s Chop Shop, and Lee Isaac Chung’s Munyurangabo. Even as it ventures deeper into grim subject matter, HARKA bursts with stunning vistas and visceral sensory detail, and delivers a final scene you’ll never forget. It’s a major work on the map of today’s international film landscape with strong roots right here in Maryland.