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IRAQ IN FRAGMENTS
USA: Typecast Pictures
UK: ICA Films
Director: James Longley
Countries: USA / Iraq
Languages: Kurdish / Arabic / English
USA & UK: 94 mins
USA Release Date: 10 November 2006 (Limited Release)
UK Release Date: 19 January 2007 (Limited Release - London, ICA and key cities)
A film in three parts, IRAQ IN FRAGMENTS offers a series of intimate, passionately-felt portraits: a fatherless 11 year-old, is apprenticed to the domineering owner of a Baghdad garage; Sadr followers in two Shiite cities rally for regional elections while enforcing Islamic law at the point of a gun; a family of Kurdish farmers welcomes the US presence, which has allowed them a measure of freedom previously denied.
Part One follows Mohammed Haithem, an 11 year-old whose education has been disrupted by war and now has an apprenticeship as an auto mechanic in the mixed Sheik Omar neighborhood in the heart of old Baghdad.
Part Two is filmed inside the Shiite political/religious movement of Moqtada Sadr, traveling between Naseriyah and the holy city of Najaf.
Part Three follows Iraqi Kurds as they assert their bid for independence, rebelling against the past atrocities of Baghdad rule. We follow these development s through the eyes of brickmakers and childhood friends on a farm south of Arbil.
American director James Longley spent more than two years filming in post- war Iraq to create this stunningly photographed, poetically rendered documentary of the war-torn country as seen through the eyes of Sunnis, Shiites and Kurds. Filmed in verite style, with no scripted narration, the film power fully explores the lives of ordinary Iraq is: people whose thoughts, beliefs, aspirations, and concerns are at once personal and illustrative of larger issues in Iraq today.
Winner of Best Director, Best Cinematography and Best Editing awards in the 2006 Sundance Film Festival documentary competition, the film was also awarded the Grand Jury Prize at the 2006 Full Frame Documentary Film Festival and is short-listed for the Oscars© 2007. Most recently the film has won the Distinguished Feature Documentary Award at the International Documentary Association (IDA) awards and was named as one the Top 5 Documentaries of the Year at the National Board of Review awards.