The second Dubai InternationalFilm Festival has stepped up its bid to become a centre of cultural debate inthe
Unspooling in front of anaudience of local dignitaries including His Royal Highness Sheikh Ahmed binSaeed Al Maktoum, Assad's tale tracks the final hours of two young Palestiniansin beleaguered Nablus who have been recruited for a human bombing raid in TelAviv. Audience reaction was muted, to say the least, but Dubai, under thedirection of Neil Stephenson, is ploughing ahead with its aims of being acentre for discussion in the Middle East, with other controversial titles thisweek to include West Bank Story (aUS-produced musical comedy rejected by Israeli festivals), the worldpremiere of Albert Brooks'
The choice of the openingnight film marked a step up in tone from
Apart from the sombre toneof Assad's bitter tale,
With 1,000 press andindustry delegates registered,