In Vitro

In Vitro + Sci-Fi Triology

classified 18 (CTBA)

Bristol Palestine Film Festival 2019


Please note: This was screened in Dec 2019

Larissa Sansour & Søren Lind
Hiam Abbass, Maisa Abd Elhadi, Marah Abu Srour
120 mins, 2018, Denmark, UK, Palestine
Primary language

Danish-Palestinian artist Larissa Sansour and director Søren Lind have been making films together for over ten years – we are delighted to welcome them both to the Festival via Skype. They will introduce this special screening of their short films which use sci-fi to explore issues of history, place and identity and present the Bristol premiere of their latest collaboration, In Vitro, which will be the final screening of the evening.

A Space Exodus 5 mins

Dir: Larissa Sansour 2009

A quirky adaptation of Stanley Kubrick's Space Odyssey in a Middle Eastern political context. The recognisable music score of the 1968 science fiction is changed to arabesque chords, matching the surreal visuals of Sansour's film.

Nation Estate 9 mins

Dir: Larissa Sansour 2012

Palestinians have their state in the form of a single skyscraper: The Nation Estate. One colossal high-rise houses the entire Palestinian population – now finally living the high life.

In the Future They Ate From the Finest Porcelain 29 mins

Dir: Larissa Sansour and Søren Lind 2016

An exploration of the role of myth for history, fact and national identity. A narrative resistance group makes underground deposits of elaborate porcelain. Their aim is to influence history and support future claims to their vanishing lands. By implementing a myth of its own, their work becomes a historical intervention – de facto creating a nation.

In Vitro 28 mins

Dir: Larissa Sansour and Søren Lind 2019

Set in the aftermath of an eco-disaster, a vast bunker under the biblical town of Bethlehem has been converted into an enormous orchard. Using heirloom seeds collected in the final days before the disaster, a group of scientists are preparing to replant the soil above.

In the hospital wing of the underground compound, the orchard’s ailing founder, 70-year-old Dunia, is lying on her deathbed when 30-year-old Alia, Dunia’s successor, comes to visit her. Alia was born underground and has never seen the town she’s destined to rebuild. The talk between the two scientists soon evolves into an intimate dialogue about memory, exile and nostalgia.

Beautifully shot, this stunning film expertly explores the themes of inherited trauma, exile and collective memory.

In Vitro was produced by Spike Island.

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