The Mediterranean Documentary First Film Festival took place at the Ibn Rachiq Maison de la Culture in Tunis from December 26th to 29th. The festival was created by Cinéma Documentaire Tunisien, a very active association promoting documentary cinema, also organizing DocuMed – Regards documentaires méditerranéens. This latter festival specialises in new documentaries from the countries bordering the Mediterranean, focussing particularly on creative, independent documentaries.
The aim of The Mediterranean Documentary First Film Festival is to show Tunisian audiences first films by emerging directors. Of the 1,000 films received, just 24 were chosen for the programme. They deal mainly with human migration, and the consequences of economic and environmental crises.
Tunisian audiences watched short and feature-length films from Morocco, Algeria, France, Turkey, Tunisia, Lebanon, Italy, Greece, Spain, Palestine and Egypt, mostly being shown for the first time. In the programme there was a Franco-Algerian documentary, Derwisha, by Leïla Beratto and Camille Millerand. The two directors look at a district in Algiers, and more specifically at a house, still being built, which has become a shelter for people migrating to Europe. In Citta Giardino Marco Paccarreda takes us to a migrant help centre in the Sicilian hinterland. The audience also had the chance to discover (or rediscover) the life of political radical Franz Fanon, through Hassane Mzeine’s film, Fanon hier, aujourd’hui.
The festival closed with a screening of Inner Mapping, a Franco-Palestinian film by Emad Ahmad and Stéphanie Latte Abdallah which plays with the territorial boundaries of Palestine’s occupation.