Film: People and The Land (1997)

Thursday, October 13, 2016 - 23:00

3 Films about Palestine by Tom Hayes

“If you only see one movie about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, see People and the Land” American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee

Ahlan w’Sahlan (Our People and Our Lands) is a Palestinian expression of greeting, offering everything between earth and sky for the comfort of a guest. It also sums up the dual responsibilities placed on an occupying power by the Geneva Accords; administration of the occupied territory and responsibility for the well-being of the people on it.

In the second film in his trio about Palestine, People and The Land, Tom Hayes airdrops viewers into the universe of an occupied people, unreeling images of a new form of apartheid based on ethnicity. Challenging U.S. foreign policy and the conventions of documentary, People and The Land examines the concrete realities of Israel’s conduct in the West Bank and Gaza, the level of U.S. support for that conduct through foreign aid, and the human cost of that aid in Palestine and the U.S.

People and The Land  | 1997  | Dir. Tom Hayes | 56 min | Arabic with subtitles

 

About the Filmmaker
Tom Hayes is Assistant Professor in the Film Division at Ohio University, where he teaches post production and documentary development.

Originally from Vermont, Tom Hayes has been making films since he was a kid, winning the Kentucky Educational Television Young Peoples Film Competition when he was 15.  As a young man he worked as a deck hand, shipping out of New York on cargo ships. While seafaring started as a strategy to pay for film school, trips into third and fourth world ports became a profound formative experience. Tom received a B.G.S. degree with Emphasis in Cinema and Philosophy from Ohio University in 1977.

He says “I am neither Israeli nor Palestinian.  As a full-blooded American “ethnic mutt,” I am often asked why I have spent so many years documenting the human rights situation of Palestinian people.  My engagement grew out of work that I did in the Cambodian refugee camps back in the early eighties.  When I finished that work, I stumbled on the granddaddy of all refugee groups, the Palestinian refugees.  I wound up making a documentary titled Native Sons: Palestinians in Exile.  Since then, as the situation of Palestinians both inside and outside of Palestine has deteriorated, I have been unable to look away, and have kept my shoulder to the stone, bearing witness to, and recording their plight.”


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Robert

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