Accreditation Festival Programme My account

20TH edition NOVEMBER 24 TO DECEMBER 2, 2023

Beirut al-lika (Beirut, the Encounter / Beyrouth, la rencontre)

Borhane Alaouié

Lebanon, Tunisia, Belgium

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Director's Biography

The late Borhane Alaouié was born in Arnoun, Lebanon, in 1941 and studied f ilmmaking at INSAS in Brussels. Influenced by May ’68 and the state of euphoria of the Arab intelligentsia in the early 1970s, he returned to Beirut, where he collaborated with his contemporaries to establish new aesthetic and humanistic grounds for Lebanese cinema. Alaouié made his first feature, The Massacre of Kfar Kassem, in 1974. His filmography also includes the documentary letter trilogy Letter from a Time of War (1984), Letter from a Time of Exile (1989) and To You, Wherever You Are (2002) and his final feature, Khallass (2006).

Sun 13 / 20h30 / Musée YSL
Tue 15 / 22h15 / Salle des Ambassadeurs

In the presence of the film crew

Haidar and Zeina met at university but lost touch when their city was divided by the Lebanese Civil War. When telephone communication is restored between East and West Beirut, the pair attempt to see each other one last time before Zeina emigrates to the United States—an impossible encounter that transforms into cathartic confessions, in which each side of the city tries in vain to be heard by the other. In 2018, Beirut al-lika (Beirut, the Encounter) was restored from the original negative by the Royal Film Archive of Belgium–CINEMATEK. Forty years after its presentation in competition at the Berlin International Film Festival, the restored film was screened again at the Berlinale in the Forum Special section.

Director : Borhane Alaouié
Producer : Hassen Daldoul
Screenwriter : Ahmad Beydoun
Cinematographer : Charles Van Damme, Alexis Grivas
Production Designer : Jean Louis Mainguy
Editor : Eliane Dubois
Sound : Henri Morelle

Haitham El Amine, Nadine Acoury, Renée Deek, Refaat Haidar, Hussam Sabbah, Najwa Haidar, Rafic Najem

Production Company : Établissement arabe de production cinématographique,
SATPEC, Cinélibre


Lebanon, Tunisia, Belgium