My Love Awaits Me by the Sea

Jordan/Germany/Palestine/Quatar 2013, Documentary, 80’ | Director, Screenplay Mais Darwazah | DoP Arlette Girardot, Joude Gorani | Editor Wardan | Sound Jochen Jezussek, Issa Qumsieh | Music Cynthia Zaven | Production The Imaginarium Films, Little Wanderer Films | Co-production Mengamuk Films | Contact The Imaginarium Films

»In my world, loneliness, sadness, love, fragility and hope are emotions so often overshadowed by the bigger political picture of an unsettled Arab region. Borders continue to get tighter, freedoms more distant and elusive, as people are left with nothing more than helplessness and suffocation. Amidst this darkness, I needed to seek some light and to make a film that would try to grant people a safe space to simply breathe and feel. So I started with myself, as I knew if I kept waiting for ›the dream‹ to happen, something inside me would die. I was going to leave my loneliness, fall in love and create my own ›once upon a time‹ ...« Mais Darwazah

My Love Awaits Me by the Sea is an essay about director Mais Darwazah’s first trip to her Palestinian homeland. As such, the film is inspired by the verses of a metaphorical lover: In the artistic work of Hasan Hourani, a poet she never got to know personally, she senses a utopia that allows her to access her impossible homeland of Palestine. Shortly before Hourani drowned in a swimming accident off the coast of Jaffa in 2003, Hourani completed his Hasan Is Everywhere – a children's book with illustrations and poems.

A central question that Mais Darwazah raises in her film is this: »How do you return to a place that exists only in your mind?« The journey involves numerous encounters with people who share their views with the director about the complexities of Palestinian identity.

Mais Darwazah’s independent film career started with short experimental films. After finishing her interior architecture degree at Kingston University (UK, 1997), she obtained a Chevening scholarship from the British Council to take an MA in Documentary Directing at Edinburgh College of Art (UK, 2007). Her graduation film Take Me Home has been screened at more than 20 international film festivals. As part of an Arab feature documentary collective entitled Family Albums, she completed The Dinner (2012), which was co-produced with ARTE France, and received the Special Mention Audience Award at Cinemed in Montpellier (France, 2012). Her film was selected to officially screen and premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival (Canada, 2013). She lives and works in Jordan.

Mais Darwazah