Screen/Society--"Faya Dayi" (Jessica Beshir, 2021)
(Jessica Beshir, 2021, 120 min, Ethiopia, Oromiffa and Harari with English subtitles, Color, DCP)
In her hypnotic documentary feature, Ethiopian-Mexican filmmaker Jessica Beshir explores the coexistence of everyday life and its mythical undercurrents. Though a deeply personal project-Beshir was forced to leave her hometown of Harar with her family as a teenager due to growing political strife-the film she returned to make is neither a straightforward work of nostalgia nor an issue-oriented doc about a particular drug culture. Rather, she has constructed something dreamlike: a film that uses light, texture, and sound to illuminate the spiritual lives of people whose experiences often become fodder for ripped-from-the-headlines tales of migration.
-- Winner of the Grand Jury Award, the Center for Documentary Studies Filmmaker Award, and the Charles E. Guggenheim Emerging Artist Award at the 2021 Full Frame Documentary Film Festival!
View trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NltBA1RbJUc
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