The Last Friday

Yahya AlabdallahJordan – 2012

Since gambling away everything he used to own, Yousef has lived alone in humble conditions, working as a taxi driver. In order to scrape together the money for an upcoming operation at the hospital, he turns to his boss for help and re-establishes contact with his son and now wealthy ex-wife after a long period of estrangement. Much is therefore in motion on the eve of the surgical procedure. A Knight of the Mournful Countenance in the city of Amman: Yousef deals with everyday adversities with silence and stoicism. He secretly steals his electricity from a neighbour. He reacts to getting a parking ticket with a shrug of his shoulders. He endures his employer’s degradations and double-dealings. When female customers talk of their annoyances regarding their fiancées or other men, he simply doesn’t listen. He’s also come to terms with being the only one around without a mobile phone. It is only the impending operation and his concern for his truanting son which leads him to take control of his life. This carefully photographed film casts a laconic and occasionally humorous gaze on the relationship between father and son, men and women, rich and poor and stagnation and change.

Original Title The Last Friday
German Title The Last Friday
French Title Le dernier vendredi
Other Titles L'ultimo venerdi - Al Juma Al Akheira
Directed by Yahya Alabdallah
Country Jordan
Available Formats Blu-ray, DCP
Screenplay Yahya Alabdallah, Miguel Machalski
Film Editing Annemarie Jacir, Mohammad Suleiman
Soundtrack Le Trio Joubran
Cinematography Rachel Aoun
Production The Royal Filmcommission Jordan
Runtime 88 Min.
Language Arabisch/d/f

Filmfestival Dubai 2011 - Jury Price, best actor, best composer
Berlinale 2012 - Forum des Internationalen Films
World cinema Amsterdam independent film festival
Rabat International Festival of Film
São Paulo International Film Festival
Chicago International Film Festival
Sarajevo International Film Festival
Vancouver International Film Festival
Fribourg Filmfestival, Prix du Jury
Malatya International Film Festival
Malmö Arab Film Festival
Zürich Arbian Filmfestival
Madrid Palestine Film Festival
Paris Printemps du Cinéma Arabe
Carthage Film Festival
Seattle International Film Festival
Nantes Three Continents Festival

«The Last Friday, der Film des inzwischen in Paris lebenden Regisseurs Yahya Alabdallah, spielt in Amman. Hauptperson ist ein geschiedener Taxifahrer, der für eine Operation dringend Geld benötigt. Es ist ein schöner, ruhiger, lethargischer Film über einen lethargischen Mann. Er spielt fern vom Tahrir-Platz, in einer friedlichen Stadt. Einmal aber führt uns der Film in einen Kiosk, in dem ein Transistorradio läuft. Ein Nachrichtensprecher verkündet, dass es Demonstrationen gegeben hat. Der König habe sich mit Kritikern getroffen. Manchmal fängt es ja ganz leise im Radio an.» Jörg Schöning, Spiegel Online

«Mit fotografischem Blick fängt Rachel Aoun (Kamera) Youssefs Geschichte ein. Kompromisslose, tiefenscharfe Bilder zeigen die städtische Struktur Ammans und die karge Landschaft der Umgebung. Der konzentrierte Blick der Kamera verschreibt sich kleinen Details, die viele Worte überflüssig machen. (…) Ein nüchterner Film, der durch die Qualität der Bilder wie auch der Schauspieler besticht.» Kara Wolf, 3sat Kulturzeit

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