OSN will be bringing over 30 titles of award-winning Arab films to its platform this July. Comprising independent, short films, complete with English and Arabic subtitles, the collection will also be available via the entertainment provider’s streaming platform commencing July 31. With a selection of carefully curated films, audiences will have the option of choosing from titles that have garnered significant success at prestigious international film festivals, including the likes of Cannes, Berlin, Venice, and Toronto.
Speaking to the launch of its new offering, Interim Chief Content Officer at OSN Rolla Karam says, “we’re thrilled to be able to provide our subscribers with the very best of Arab independent cinema, giving these short films the exposure they deserve.” “Independent movies are often limited to special screenings and film festivals so we are proud to be able to bring this form of art to viewers in the region and to champion these skilled Arab filmmakers by showcasing over 30 of their short films on our platform, on both OSN Yahala Cinema and OSN’s streaming app,” she said. With plenty of options to choose from, audiences can expect to be spoiled for choice. If you’re looking for a place to start, here are our top picks.
An Emirati animation film that tells the story of hope, perseverance, and the power of a dream, Karouma has graced more than 70 film festivals around the world, having won eight awards for its animation, storytelling, and execution. Oriented around a young and talented boy determined to leave his family home in pursuit of his dreams, the film is sure to spark a sense of curiosity and wonder in all who come across it.
Having won more than 20 international awards, including Best Animation at the Lebanon International Film Festival and Best Short Film at the Valletta Film Festival, Ayny is a definite must-watch. A Jordanian Stop-Motion Animation, the film tells the story of two young boys, who run away from their mother’s protection and experience the dangers of war, simply to play music.
Five Boys and a Wheel
A Palestinian drama based on American author Raymond Carver’s short story Bicycles, Muscles, Cigarettes, Five Boys and a Wheel takes viewers on an unforgettable journey through Jordan, where a young father finds himself navigating a conflict between his son and their neighbors. Having won several awards including the Golden Wahr Award at the Oran International Film Arabic Film Festival and the Silver Palm Award at the Mexico International Film Festival, the film sparks important discourse around family values and morals.
The Rifle, the Jackal, the Wolf, and the Boy
A Lebanese coming-of-age parable, The Rifle, the Jackal, the Wolf, and the Boy tells a convoluted story of vengeance, lies, and violence. Having toured more than 20 international film festivals, the film was also shortlisted for the 89th Academy Awards’ Best Live-Action Short Film category before going on to win the Jury Award at the SHORT to the Point – International Short Film Festival.
Telling the story of a Mizrahi Jewish family who emigrate from Morocco to Haifa, Palestine in 1948, The Parrot is a poignant tale about new starts and hardship. Staring Tunisian actress Hend Sabri, the independent film has graced a number of international film festivals having won two Jury Awards at the Malmö Arab Film Festival and Mizna’s Twin Cities Arab Film Festival.