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Film Series : The 18th Annual Chicago Palestine Film Festival

What Walaa Wants

2018, Christy Garland, Canada/Denmark, 89 min.

Show Times

  • Sat, Apr 27th 8:00pm

“A classic coming-of-age story with a girl-power message.”--Jay Weissberg, Variety

“Refreshing to see a film that portrays such a proud, resilient, young Palestinian woman…you will remember Walaa.”--Amy Siegel, Point of View Magazine

This vibrant coming-of-age documentary follows a headstrong Palestinian girl raised under trying family circumstances in the Balata Refugee Camp, as she prepares to burst into womanhood on her own terms. Fifteen-year-old Walaa, coping with the return of her mother from eight years in prison for aiding a suicide bomber, announces her surprising resolve to join the Palestinian Security Forces. Director Garland follows her subject’s progress over the five years in which Walaa pursues her dream, finding the discipline and rigorous physical demands of military life a greater challenge than she anticipated. Walaa’s mercurial personality and energy level set the tone and the pace of the film, while under the eye of a new mentor she moves with newfound grace from teenage impulsiveness to capable adulthood. In Arabic with English subtitles. DCP digital.

Preceded by FACES OF NABLUS (2012, Omar Nabulsi, Palestine, 12 min.). Both in DCP digital. (BS)

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