Sufat Chol (Sand Storm)

Israel 2016, 87', Feature Film
Elite Zexer
Beta Cinema |



The celebrations in a Bedouin village on the edge of Israel’s Negev desert are in full swing. Jalila is host to the wedding of her own husband! She swallows her anger as as her pride and takes care of the food, the music and the rituals. She even makes up the bed for the wedding night. But then she discovers that her daughter Layla has a boyfriend, a fellow student. Initially, Jalila responds to Layla with unrelenting hostility because as a mother she knows that this love will encounter massive resistance in the family clan. Yet Layla, still loved and cosseted by her indulgent and opportunistic father, believes she’ll be able to lead an independent life. And hopes in vain for his approval.

At the centre of Zexer’s debut feature film is the portrait of an emotionally layered relationship between mother and daughter, both of whom in their different ways are struggling against restrictive patriarchal traditions. That the film director remained in close contact with the women of Bedouin villages for ten years is reflected in the authenticity of the setting and the complexity of her characters. A story about the deep ambivalence between modernity and traditional, ritualistic patterns of order. Sand Storm won the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival 2016.

Debut Feature Film Competition

Elite Zexer
Feature Film
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