Tag Archives: Arab American Films

Festival Director shares stories of Twin Cities Arab Film Festival 2017

No art passes our conscience in the way film does, and goes directly to our feelings, deep down into the dark rooms of our souls.” ― Ingmar Bergman

Powerful words spoken by a brilliant filmmaker whose genius lives in the films that will for all time shape our images and ideas.  As Bergman knew, film “goes directly to our feelings, deep down into the dark rooms of our souls.”  It is for this reason that Mizna’s  2017 Arab Film Festival is needed at this hour.

In fact, Mizna has sponsored the Twin Cities Arab Film Festival for several years.  Over the years audiences have grown in number and interests as film lovers have experienced the curated program of screen reflections of the Arab experience.  Audiences have learned about the heterogeneity of Arab people and, through film, have explored the complexities of the culture which leads to true cultural understanding.

Mizna is at the epicenter of this region’s Arab American literature, film, and art; the organization, its programs and publication, are nationally recognized as the source of ideas and words related to the Arab American experience.   Minnesotans have learned to depend on the publication Mizna: Prose, Poetry, and Art Exploring Arab America as a unique resource.  Mizna is well-known as the sponsor of  literary events,  an ever-expanding  program of readings, community dialogues, even Arab drumming classes.  Moving Image, the recent film/discussion series hosted in collaboration with the Walker Art Center, is a good example of major Mizna initiatives.  https://walkerart.org/about/moving-image/

Over the years the Twin Cities Arab Film Festival has been held in various sites at different times of the year.  As of Fall 2016 the Film Festival has become an annual “institution.”  Will Wright of KFAI radio celebrated with a timely introduction to the idea and the relevance of the Festival. https://soundcloud.com/minneculture/with-more-arab-films-a-festival-goes-annual

This year, Voices of Northeast reached out to learn more.  (Though Mizna is now a St. Paul institution its roots are in Northeast Minneapolis — and NE roots run deep….)  We invited Festival DirectorMichelle Baroody to share the story of Mizna and the Film Festival during a free-flowing video interview.  The result is an absolutely delightful – and informative – discussion of the mission of Mizna, the goal and growth of the Film Festival, and the timeliness of the 2017 Twin Cities Arab Film Festival set for September 28-October 1 at various sites.

You will learn and be enthralled as Michelle shares her unique story and the back stories of the Twin Cities Arab Film Festival.  Michelle  expresses with clarity and deep commitment the spirit that informs the Festival. https://youtu.be/jq2dd-VuY1Q

Then click on the Film Festival website for emerging details including the schedule of film showings, background information about the films and filmmakers, locations, ticketing information, more about the sponsor and excellent coverage of past festivals.