TIFF 2016 Movie Review: GAZA SURF CLUB (Germany 2016) ***

Movie Reviews of films that will be playing at TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) in 2016. Go to TIFF 2016 Movie Reviews and read reviews of films showing at the festival.

gaza_surf_club_poster.jpgGAZA SURF CLUB (Germany 2016) ***
Directed by Philip Gnadt and Mickey Yamine

Writers: Michael Dupke, Philip Gnadt

Review by Gilbert Seah

The film begins with the map showing the Gaza Strip between Israel and Egypt bordered by the Mediterranean Sea and then goes on to show a beach with waves that is surrounded by dilapidated buildings.

It is clear that the Jewish Arab conflict, a staple in Israeli and Palestinian films is an issue affecting the characters in this documentary as well. The main characters here are the youth who have a passion for the sport of surfing – something that is unimagined for the Arab people.

Two youngsters that the film concentrate on are 23-year old Ibrahim and 15-year old Sabah. Ibrahim dreams of owning his own surfboard shop while Sabah dreams of being able to swim and surf – something girls are not allowed to do, as it is deemed shameful in the culture.

The documentary sails along smoothly revealing the troubles facing the youth in materializing their goals for surfing. The cinematography of the surfing scenes is magnificent.

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qonly9By1aQ

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