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Clouds of lies

Erased, __ Ascent of the Invisible Director
Regissør: Ghassan Halwani
(Libanon)

An overwhelming amount of disappearance cases remain unresolved in Lebanon.

In 1983, during the Lebanese civil war, artist, animator and now film director Ghassan Halwani witnessed the kidnapping of a man he knew. Many years later, Halwani thought he saw the same man in a crowd: It was just a brief glimpse, but enough to evoke the memory of a time that left him with thousands of unanswered questions.

The disappearance he witnessed was one of the many thousands of disappearances in the Civil War, which lasted from 1975 to 1990. An overwhelming amount of these cases are still unsolved. By combining visual elements – from photos and drawings to maps, texts and his own animations – Halwani's debut film is an emotionally strong and experimental essay. Through his attempt to avoid the lost being forever forgotten, the film explores what remains when the authorities, time and the course of life come together to erase the memory not only of what happened but of the identities of the people who did not there is more.

The truth about the past

Halwani was not alone in witnessing the abduction; someone took a photograph of the kidnapping. This photo appears at the beginning of the film, but not in the original version – Halwani has removed both the kidnappers. . .

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Bianca-Olivia Nita
Nita is a freelance journalist and critic for Ny Tid.

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