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A Door to the Sky (Bab Al-Sama Maftuh)

Film screening as part of the Visualizing the Sacred: Islam on Film series.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008
7:30 PM - 9:30 PM
Billy Wilder Theater
Hammer Museum
10899 Wilshire Blvd. @ Westwood Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90024

(1989, Morocco/Tunisia/France)
Directed by Farida Ben Lyazid

Farida Ben Lyazid's directorial debut brought a bold, feminist perspective to the shifting values of Moroccan society. The Sufi-inspired tale vividly enacts the spiritual awakening of Nadia after she returns from France to her native Fez for her father's funeral. Inspired by the chanting of Koranic verses, she begins a journey of self-discovery that simultaneously challenges the orthodoxy of Isamic tradition.

Cast: Chaidia Hadraoui, Eva Saint-Paul, Zakia Tahri. Presented in Arabic and French dialogue with English subtitles. 35mm, 107 min.


Visualizing the Sacred: Islam on Film

Since September 11, 2001, images of Islam in the mainstream American media have been virtually monolithic in their focus on terrorism and radicalism. At the same time, the on-going Danish cartoon controversy has sparked heated debate about the intersections of free speech and religious tradition, representation and tolerance. The films in this series offer a timely counterpoint to prevailing media trends as well as stirring examples of how filmmakers from around the world have grappled with some of the unique challenges of representing Islamic history, faith and practice on screen.

Whether addressing the contemporary struggle to maintain belief in a rapidly changing world or seeking ways to visualize the ineffable experience of the divine -as well as the divine itself - these recent and classic works, alike, explore the deeply human joys and complexities of Muslim faith and identity as viewed from a diverse range of cultural contexts and genres. Islam is not only the subject of these films, it is their inspiration.

Parking - After 6 p.m., $3 in the lot under the theater. Enter from Westwood Blvd., just north of Wilshire.

Cost : Advance tickets - $10 at, $9, general admission; $8, Cineclub members, students, seniors and UCLA Alumni Association members with ID

UCLA Film and Television Archive
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