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A Gaza Weekend

Directed by Basil Khalil
Palestine, UK
93 minutes
Unclassified 15+
Gaza suddenly becomes the safest – and funniest – place on Earth during a pandemic in this uproarious comedy from Palestinian-British filmmaker Basil Khalil. FIPRESCI award, Toronto.
Khalil’s knockout feature debut is a hugely entertaining mix of caper comedy hijinks and sharp political satire. A virus has plunged Israel into lockdown, leaving British journalist Michael and his stressed-out Israeli girlfriend Keren stranded. The desperate couple hire inept Palestinian hustlers Waleed and Emad to smuggle them to Europe via the Gaza Strip, which ironically has been made safe from the virus by the separation wall. Naturally everything goes spectacularly wrong before the bickering bunch realise everyone’s survival depends on putting differences aside and devising a new plan that’s so crazy it might just work. This heartfelt satire is loaded with zingy dialogue and sparkling performances.
Its charm and ability to instil emotional engagement for all involved is a marvellous feat you can’t put a price on.
Faisal Al-Jadir, Film Inquiry
Manages the tricky feat of taking a historically hostile and volatile situation and creating a bouncy little story from it. Khalil does this without losing any of the gravity that we all know is part of the everyday for the people living through it.
Brian Shaer, Film Threat
Conceived before the COVID-19 pandemic, this witty and oddly prescient comedy of role reversal from British-Palestinian writer-director Basil Khalil playfully and cleverly finds a rich source of humour in political tensions and the human foibles that straddle class and ethnicity.
Ravi Srinivasan, Toronto International Film Festival


Mon 12 Jun
Event Cinemas George Street - Cinema 5
Assisted Listening
Past Event Cancel
Wed 14 Jun
Event Cinemas George Street - Cinema 5
Assisted Listening
Past Event Cancel
Program Strand
Unclassified 15+
Palestine, UK
In English, Arabic, Hebrew, and French with English subtitles
Basil Khalil
Amina Dasmal
Stephen Mangan, Mouna Hawa, Adam Bakri
Basil Khalil, Daniel Chan
Eric Raphael Mizrahi, Lasse Ulvedal Tolbøll
Shahnaz Dulaimy, Victoria Boydell
Australian Premiere
Festival Award Winners, Off-Beat, Middle East, Comedies
Company Credits
Sales Agent: Protagonist Pictures
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