Thursday 24 October
The Apollo of Gaza
Nicolas Wadimoff, 78 min, Documentary, in Arabic, English and and French with English subtitles, Switzerland/Canada, 2018
Followed by a discussion with the director Nicolas Wadimoff
In 2013, an ancient statue of Apollo was found in the waters off Gaza, before disappearing under mysterious circumstances. Is it the work of forgers, or a gift from the gods to a Palestinian people desperately in need of hope? Soon the rumors start to swirl, while behind the scenes local and international players start jostling; some driven by historical preservation and others by purely commercial interests. Filmed in Gaza and Jerusalem, “The Apollo of Gaza” plays out like a mystery built around a national treasure that is the stuff of dreams.
“The Apollo of Gaza” is an engaging reflection on the passage of time and the fragility of civilizations, as well as a poetic and philosophical meditation that immerses us in the often-misunderstood realities of life in a place that continues to pay a heavy price for the seemingly endless Israeli-Palestinian conflict; a place where life doggedly carries on, resisting.
Like a meteor streaking across the sky, the statue of Apollo brings a moment of light and beauty to Gaza. Can it help restore dignity to a people, revealing a glorious history and fostering pride in a nation often misrepresented and demeaned?
The film was screened in many festivals including at Locarno Film Festival - Semaine de la critique, Dok Leipzig, Palestine Cinema Days, Montreal International Documentary Festival, Göteborg International Film Festival and FIPADOC International Documentary Festival Biarritz.