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Abu Dhabi Film Festival

The Dubai Film Festival Diaries: Khaled Abol Naga, The Sleeping Tree from Bahrain and Santa Claus

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 12.15.2014 | Entertainment
E. Nina Rothe

The film is entertaining, funny, cute and having Egyptian legend Lebleba introduce the screening playing "Mama Noel," complete with red and white jacket and hat, was both surreal and cool.

The Doha Ajyal Diaries: Speed Sisters Kicks It Off With the Magic of Palestine

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 12.02.2014 | Entertainment
E. Nina Rothe

Amber Fares' Speed Sisters is cool, fast-paced, insightful and fun to watch. Everything a documentary about the first all-women race car driving team in the Middle East should be, and more.

Best of Abu Dhabi: Aditya Vikram Sengupta's Labour of Love

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 11.22.2014 | Entertainment
E. Nina Rothe

To describe Labour of Love would prove a personal labor in futility. But what I can say is that it is a film richly shot, beautifully written and acted so organically, I simply felt overwhelmed by its message for days after viewing it.

Charisma Personified: Meeting Ali Suliman at the Abu Dhabi Film Festival

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 11.15.2014 | Entertainment
E. Nina Rothe

Meet Ali Suliman. Not only does Suliman embody all of the above qualities and possess each and every one of those talents, but he's also a great interview.

Best of Abu Dhabi: Samir's Iraqi Odyssey Explains Iraq and the Humanity Within

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 11.13.2014 | Entertainment
E. Nina Rothe

We're so used to hearing Iraq mentioned on the news and yet, I don't know about you but through the headlines, the violence, the dictators and the wars, I've actually learned very little about this historically rich country, and more importantly its resilient people -- the Iraqis.

Best of Abu Dhabi: Learning the Games People Play Through The Narcicyst's Rise

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 11.09.2014 | Entertainment
E. Nina Rothe

The talented, charismatic, popular Iraqi-Canadian rapper named The Narcicyst first appeared on my cultural radar in 2009 when I watched City of Life. In his latest short film, a senses-overload experience titled Rise, Alsalman explores his roots and his ability to step away to comment on them.

The Abu Dhabi Diaries: Making the Impossible Possible, for Great World Cinema

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 11.03.2014 | Entertainment
E. Nina Rothe

After all is said and done, the movie screenings finished, the red carpets rolled away and the party venues dismantled, what should a film festival leave a cinema lover with?

The Abu Dhabi Diaries: Through The Valley, Into an Iraqi Odyssey and All for a Labour of Love

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 10.31.2014 | Entertainment
E. Nina Rothe

I rediscovered my love of life and passion for cinema here in Abu Dhabi. And if I sound like I'm gushing, make no mistake. I am.

The Abu Dhabi Diaries: From A to B, With Great Arab Cinema in Between

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 10.27.2014 | Entertainment
E. Nina Rothe

This year, the Abu Dhabi Film Festival feels extra special.

The Abu Dhabi Diaries: Can a Film Festival Help Us Overcome Misconceptions, Conflicts and Stereotypes?

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 10.22.2014 | Entertainment
E. Nina Rothe

This wondrous season of endless possibilities kicks off with the Abu Dhabi Film Festival where, from October 23rd to the 1st of November, it's time once again for some magnificent movie watching, some life-changing interviews and the all around welcoming atmosphere of my favorite region in the world.

European Film Screenings in the UAE: Trying for Peace, Love and Understanding

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 11.17.2014 | Entertainment
E. Nina Rothe

I love what Quentin Tarantino says, "When people ask me if I went to film school I tell them, no, I went to films." It's so true, just as art is only learned by looking at paintings and then drawing, doing, so filmmaking can only be achieved by watching the masters at work, and then trying to capture their essence.

The Venice Diaries: Theeb, How the World Will End, and There's an App for That!

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 10.29.2014 | Entertainment
E. Nina Rothe

Would you use an app that sends a message to other users in the area so they could go break up with your boyfriend, or propose to your sweetheart? Well, artist/filmmaker and writer Miranda July thinks you should.

Fear and the Filmmaker in Cannes: The Aftermath of the Inauguration of the Public Toilet at Kilometer 375

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 07.22.2014 | Arts
E. Nina Rothe

Despite its short length, The Aftermath is a full and significant film, and although bare and minimalist in look, it's crowded with expectation. It is also groundbreaking, as I've endlessly mentioned before, the first film from Egypt to be included in the Cinéfondation.

The Cannes Diaries: Star Wars in Abu Dhabi, Adrien Brody as an Emperor and Ranvir Shorey

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 07.21.2014 | Arts
E. Nina Rothe

Here's to hoping that one day, soon, cinema may bring cultures together, and great actors, world directors and multi-lingual writers may work alongside each other to create masterpieces that can transcend borders and labels.

The Cannes Diaries: Divorce Orthodox Style, the Next Arab Superstar and Hugs on the Croisette

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 07.17.2014 | Arts
E. Nina Rothe

Walking up the stairs of the Theatre Croisette inside the JW Marriott after the screening, I felt as if I was thankfully coming up for air, after having been submersed in feelings and beautifully cinematic anguish for nearly two hours.

The Cannes Diaries: Grace of Monaco, a Slasher, a Party Girl and SANAD

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 07.19.2014 | Arts
E. Nina Rothe

The festival kicked off perfectly for me inside the Palais on Wednesday morning, to watch the first Cannes screening of Olivier Dahan's Grace of Monaco, starring Nicole Kidman. I expected entertainment from the film and instead, got a lesson in what it means to be a woman, a strong woman.

'The Cannes Diaries': A Pre-Festival, Last-Minute Checklist

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 07.11.2014 | Arts
E. Nina Rothe

If you're looking for reviews, there are brilliant men and women out there who do it all beautifully. But if you're looking for highlights, fun tidbits and a slightly different way of looking at the grandest film festival in the world, you're in the right place.

Eight Fabulous New Finds from Middle East Now Fest

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 07.01.2014 | Arts
E. Nina Rothe

I'll preface this by pointing out that my fellow Florentines are notoriously pragmatic. Nothing really excites them, but at the concert for Lebanese band Mashrou' Leila the crowd fell head-over-heels under their spell.

Love, FEMEN and a Bottle Revolution: Four to Watch at Hot Docs

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 06.25.2014 | Arts
E. Nina Rothe

I've personally discovered the truth behind the world's headlines from documentaries.

'Middle East Now': Changing the World, One Film at a Time

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 06.08.2014 | Arts
E. Nina Rothe

Personally, I feel that the elusive "peace" -- along with inseparable companions, justice and equality -- in the region will come out of what one filmmaker calls "artistic resistance."

The Miracle of Salvo: Can You Still Believe?

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 05.26.2014 | Entertainment
E. Nina Rothe

I adore fairy tales and have never really grown up from that joy I felt as a child, listening to my grandfather read me stories by the Brothers Grimm or watching the Disney videos. But these days I require a little more heft, turmoil and character development. That's where Fabio Grassadonia's and Antonio Piazza's touching drama Salvo comes in.

Crowdfunding for the Oscars: The Journey of Mahdi Fleifel's A World Not Ours

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 04.19.2014 | Entertainment
E. Nina Rothe

In his fascinating documentary A World Not Ours, and the short 'Epilogue' titled Xenos which just premiered at this year's Berlinale, filmmaker Mahdi Fleifel shows us his very personal connection to the refugee camp of his youth, Ain el-Helweh in Lebanon.

'The Shawati' Interviews': Cinematic Pioneer Nawaf Al-Janahi

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 03.23.2014 | Arts
E. Nina Rothe

Al-Janahi doesn't mince his words when it comes to the business and culture of filmmaking in the Emirates. He'd rather see great quality and professionalism than cater to the much-promoted attitude of nurturing everyone who tries, at the risk of undermining the true talents of Khaliji (Gulf) cinema.

'The Shawati' Interviews': When I Saw You Filmmaker Annemarie Jacir

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 03.24.2014 | Arts
E. Nina Rothe

"Listen to your heart. If my films can touch one person and maybe give them the feeling that they don't have to be swallowed up by this world."

'The Shawati' Interviews': Filmmaker and Mentor Scandar Copti

E. Nina Rothe | Posted 03.24.2014 | Arts
E. Nina Rothe

One man who has been working extensively in both Doha and Abu Dhabi is Palestinian filmmaker Scandar Copti. I caught up with the filmmaker to interview him for my piece on cinema in the Gulf featured in Shawati' Abu Dhabi.