Watani - My Homeland is the story of one family's fight and struggle to survive the Syrian Civil War. Having lost her husband, the mother makes the heart achingly painful decision to leave ...
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Emma Grace Eisenmann
Watani - My Homeland is the story of one family's fight and struggle to survive the Syrian Civil War. Having lost her husband, the mother makes the heart achingly painful decision to leave her homeland, in search of safety and a brighter future for her children. Filmed over three years, the film chronicles the family's journey from the front-line in Aleppo, to a little town in Germany. Escaping the chaos and terror of their war torn homeland becomes a catalyst for a different kind of struggle; the struggle to understand your past and accept your present, to adapt to a new life, to hold on to hope, and the idea of belonging to a homeland.
Some of the earlier footage in Syria was taken from director Marcel Mettelsiefen's Syria: Children on the Frontline (2014), however instead of using the traditional English narrator to structure the film like previous film, Watani: My Homeland lets the film flow using the original language subtitled. See more »
Few people have used 40 minutes to capture more than "Watani: My Homeland." This a harrowing short documentary where the filmmakers allowed themselves to be taken wherever their subjects went. Whether that be the hell-fire of battle, the playful streets of a child, the first day in a foreign land or the empty coffee table of a lover whose lost her lover. The movie lucks out with its fascinating, playful and soul-bearing subjects. And the movie lives with them. At no point did I feel manipulated to make a political stand; manipulated to make a definitive decision; or manipulated to feel for anyone. The movie, like all great documentaries, offers a lens of truth and allows the viewers to be with these brave people for a short period of time. We are allowed to take from it what we will and are not demanded to side with the filmmakers. And what I took away were feelings of loss, sadness, joy with pain, pain with love, freedom and above all hope. This family transforms before our eyes, but never truly leaves their Watani.
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