Something from there

Something from there is a short film on the substance of our original lands. How does connection to land change after uprooting and in diaspora? How does matter come to embody our memories and defy official histories? These are some of the open-ended questions asked in this reflection on the complicated implications of wanting a piece of land after displacement. Weaving between the voices of the artist’s parents, one a refugee and the other not, the film is personal, yet evokes a shared Palestinian experience. A fragmented story of the artist’s father’s exile from Palestine in 1948 is the guiding narrative. As he explains, he has not returned since – but for a single day in the sixties. Her mother, on the other hand, grew up in and has lived in Palestine for much of her life (her contribution to the film was recorded over Zoom while she sat on a patio in her hometown of Qabatia). Although the mother’s story is not the focus, it becomes clear that she is able to return and collect the “something from there” that is referred to. The “something” is never named, though it is at the centre of the narrative. Is it soil? A piece of land? The remains of our ancestors? The distinction between land and body is not made, and rather Something from there focuses on the power of memory and symbols to revive a denied homeland, defy official histories, and counter the settler colonial impetus to erase any assertion of Indigenous life.

  • Rana Nazzal Hamadeh
  • Toronto Palestine Film Festival
  • Project Type:
  • Runtime:
    6 minutes 50 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    September 30, 2020
  • Production Budget:
    1,200 USD
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
    Canada, Palestine, State of
  • Language:
    Arabic, English
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Toronto Palestine Film Festival
    September 27, 2020
  • Cinema Politica Fluid Frames from the Palestinian Diaspora
    March 19, 2021
  • JAYU Palestinian Short Film Series
    August 31, 2021
  • Queer Cinema for Palestine Film Festival – Embassy Cultural House
    London, Ontario
    November 11, 2021
Director Biography - Rana Nazzal Hamadeh

Rana Nazzal Hamadeh is a Palestinian-Canadian artist immersed in community organizing both on Turtle Island and in occupied Palestine. Her photography, film, and installation works look at the complexity of decolonial disruptions, combining storytelling with critical analysis to draw links between lived experience and systems of power. Rana holds an MFA in Documentary Media from Ryerson University and is based between Ramallah and Tkaronto/Toronto.

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