DOM SUN | 3 NOV | 19h | Sala Manoel de Oliveira

Fora de Competição | Out of Competition
Naziha Arebi (Líbia)
Líbia, Líbano, Canadá, Estados Unidos, Holanda, Qatar, Reino Unido | doc | 2018 | 97’

Legendado em português e inglês Subtitled in English and Portuguese

Filmado ao longo de cinco anos, Freedom Fields acompanha três mulheres e a sua equipa de futebol na Líbia pós-revolução, enquanto o país mergulha na guerra civil e as esperanças utópicas da Primavera Árabe começam a esvair-se. Através dos olhares destas activistas acidentais, observamos a realidade de um país em transição, onde histórias de amor pessoais e as aspirações colidem com a História. Um filme íntimo sobre a esperança, a luta e o sacrifício, num país onde os sonhos parecem um luxo. Uma carta de amor à sororidade e à força da união.

Filmed over five years, Freedom Fields follows three women and their football team in post-revolution Libya, as the country descends into civil war and the utopian hopes of the Arab Spring begin to fade. Through the eyes of these accidental activists, we see the reality of a country in transition, where the personal stories of love and aspirations collide with History. An intimate film about hope, struggle and sacrifice in a land where dreams seem a luxury. A love letter to sisterhood and the power of team.

Produção Production Naziha Arebi, Flore Cosquer
Produção Executiva Executive Producers Sonja Henrici, Noe Mendelle, Leslie Finla Y (Creative Scotland)
Fotografia Cinematography Naziha Arebi
Montagem Editing Ling Lee, Alice Powell, Maya Hawke
Música Original Original Music Katya Mihailova
Desenho de Som Sound Design Giovanni Buccomino
Produtora Produced by SDI Productions Ltd, HuNa Productions
Distribuidor Distributor Wide House

Prémios Awards
Melhor Filme – Joburg IFF, África do Sul | Melhor Documentário – Karama Human Rights FF

Festivais Festivals
Dok.fest München, Alemanha | Toronto IFF, Canadá | CPH:DOX, Dinamarca | IDFA, Holanda | Mumbai FF, Índia | BFI London FF, Inglaterra | Doc Against Gravity, Polónia | Ajyal FF, Qatar | Stockholm IFF, Suécia

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Nota de Intenções Director’s Statement

My father left Libya in the 70’s at a time when many Libyan exiles were finding a new life in the UK. In 2011, the 'Arab Spring' and Libyan revolution were capturing the world's hearts and I travelled to Libya, meeting Libyans my own age for the first time. I became obsessed with the need to explore my dual cultures and how different life would be if my geography had been different. I was desperate to understand what being ‘Libyan’ meant and moved there in 2012.
I found the team, a group of women full of fire and hope for a new future, and they immediately took me in and made me one of them. Sport does that; it has the ability to develop deep trust and relationships, which in turn forged a real intimacy within making the film. This results in an intense rawness and closeness, which has not been seen out of Libya before.
Initially I thought I was making a film about the women’s fight to play their first ever match as Libya's national women's football team but it became something far richer, more intimate and more powerful. I started to question how far we go before we realise a dream is over, I also discovered the power we find in such moments to start to create new dreams. This revealed itself as the core essence of the film, for the team, and for myself. The human ability to re-invent, to find strength, spirit, even when we feel we have lost everything.
I was embedded in these women’s lives and them in mine, watching them grow up over a period of five years, from a national women’s football team into accidental activists. The film has become more about a wider struggle, and how they are now trying to change things for the next generation. It is about people, women, individuals fighting to attain their dreams, their goals. Football is a vehicle that gives access to their everyday lives in an open and visceral way. A trigger for their wit, fire and humour.
As a female filmmaker, of dual heritage, I have a viewpoint into their lives that many never get to see, especially with it being a patriarchal segregated society. This duality, which could be seen as a hindrance actually allows me to bridge cultural and gender norms to shed light on a different side of Libya and the region, a responsibility to bear witness, up close and share these intimate yet universal stories rarely seen on screen.
FREEDOM FIELDS is a film about having the power to dream, to have a choice to carve your own future, against privilege, and to impact those around you, even if just for 90 minutes on a field. It is an intimate, tactile portrait of a moment in time in a country people know very little about about. A love letter to a place, to sisterhood, to the power of the team and community. A testament to taking action, finding strength in the face of adversity, and sharing that will, power and joy with others and the next generation.