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Stories by Rebecca Romani

Human Rights Watch Festival Brings Relevance

Human Rights Watch Festival Brings Relevance

Feb. 2
By Rebecca Romani

The Human RIghts Watch Festival screens some surprisingly timely documentaries at the MOPA this weekend.

Youth Rising: New Arab Cinema In a Post-Arab Spring World

Youth Rising: New Arab Cinema In a Post-Arab Spring World

Oct. 29
By Rebecca Romani

Stories about life for young people in a post-Arab Spring world are on the rise.

San Diego Arab Film Festival Turns 5

San Diego Arab Film Festival Turns 5

Oct. 28
By Rebecca Romani

One of the newest film festivals in town showcases new films from the Arab world.

'Battle of Algiers' Still Gripping In Restored New Print

'Battle of Algiers' Still Gripping In Restored New Print

Oct. 19
By Rebecca Romani

Rialto Pictures' newly restored print of "The Battle of Algiers" is still timely five decades later. Guest blogger Rebecca Romani has this review.

San Diego Italian Film Festival Continues Through Sunday

San Diego Italian Film Festival Continues Through Sunday

Oct. 12
By Rebecca Romani

Women directors are dominating the screen in the closing days of the festival.

Auguri! San Diego Italian Film Festival Turns 10

Auguri! San Diego Italian Film Festival Turns 10

Oct. 5
By Beth Accomando, Rebecca Romani

The festival throws a 10th anniversary birthday bash with some intriguing new films. It runs through Oct. 16 with screenings at the Museum of Photographic Arts in Balboa Park and La Paloma Theatre in Encinitas.

'Theeb' A Mysterious Journey Through Thrilling Landscape

'Theeb' A Mysterious Journey Through Thrilling Landscape

Dec. 2
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani says 'Theeb,' Jordan's entry for the Oscars is a stunning example of new Arab cinema. The film is now playing at the Ken Cinema.

Review: 'Queens of Syria' Brings New Perspective To Syrian Crisis

Review: 'Queens of Syria' Brings New Perspective To Syrian Crisis

Nov. 23
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani says "Queens of Syria" — Yasmin Fedda's new documentary which had its U.S. debut this weekend at the San Diego Arab Film Festival — is a powerful commentary on refugees, war and the cycles of history.

'Queens of Syria' Director Uses Creative Methods For Political Topics

'Queens of Syria' Director Uses Creative Methods For Political Topics

Nov. 20
By Rebecca Romani

Yasmin Fedda's new documentary, "Queens of Syria," has its U.S. premiere in San Diego Saturday. Fedda spoke to Cinema Junkie guest blogger Rebecca Romani about documentaries, Syrian refugee women in Jordan and how an ancient Greek tragedy helped them find their voices.

San Diego Arab Film Festival Opens  Friday

San Diego Arab Film Festival Opens Friday

Nov. 17
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani says The San Diego Arab Film Festival, opening Friday at the Museum of Photographic Arts, has some films worth watching, including a timely documentary on Syrian refugees.

Guest Review: 'A Sinner In Mecca'

Guest Review: 'A Sinner In Mecca'

Oct. 14
By Rebecca Romani

Guest reviewer Rebecca Romani says Parvez Sharma's new documentary, "A Sinner in Mecca" (now playing at the Digital Gym Cinema) is a mesmerizing look at a gay Muslim's search for religious meaning in an age-old rite.

Preview: San Diego Italian Film Festival

Preview: San Diego Italian Film Festival

Oct. 13
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani says neo-noir and a comedy about twins top this year's program at the San Diego Italian Film Festival starting Tuesday and running through Oct. 24.

Guest Review: 'The Cut'

Guest Review: 'The Cut'

Oct. 2
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani says Fatih Akin's new film "The Cut" (opening this weekend at the Ken Cinema) may be one of the best feature films yet on the Armenian Genocide.

Guest Review: 'Learning To Drive'

Guest Review: 'Learning To Drive'

Sept. 15
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani says that while "Learning to Drive" (opened this weekend in cinemas around San Diego) is largely predictable, it's the little moments that make a gorgeous late summer film.

'The Prophet' Serves Up Words To Animate By

'The Prophet' Serves Up Words To Animate By

Aug. 14
By Rebecca Romani

The long-awaited feature length animation film based on Khalil Gibran's "The Prophet" opens this week at the Landmark Ken Cinema. Guest critic Rebecca Romani says the film safely stays within Disney territory with moments of visual brilliance.

Looking Ahead At 22nd San Diego Latino Film Festival

Looking Ahead At 22nd San Diego Latino Film Festival

March 18
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani has some suggestions on what to see and what to miss as this year's San Diego Latino Film Festival winds down.

Human Rights Watch Film Festival: What To See

Human Rights Watch Film Festival: What To See

Jan. 22
By Rebecca Romani

The Human Rights Watch Film Festival, which promises at least one story with a local angle, starts Thursday night at the Museum of Photographic Arts. Here's a rundown of the film schedule.

A Comedy Writer Follows The Trail Of One Of The Greatest Art Thefts...

A Comedy Writer Follows The Trail Of One Of The Greatest Art Thefts In History

Dec. 11
By Rebecca Romani

Filmmaker Joe Medeiros was obsessed by the mystery behind the theft of the Mona Lisa so he made a fun and fascinating documentary. Guest blogger Rebecca Romani interviews the director of "Mona Lisa Is Missing," screening Thursday night.

'Mona Lisa Is Missing' Looks To Art Crime Of The Century

'Mona Lisa Is Missing' Looks To Art Crime Of The Century

Dec. 11
By Rebecca Romani

In 1911, someone stole the most famous painting in the world. Director Joe Medeiros finds out why in "Mona Lisa Is Missing," screening Thursday night at La Paloma Theater.

Film Review: 'Pieces of Lives, Pieces of Dreams'

Film Review: 'Pieces of Lives, Pieces of Dreams'

Nov. 21
By Rebecca Romani

The Algerian documentary, "Pieces of Lives, Pieces of Dreams," screening at the Third San Diego Arab Film Festival this week, celebrates art as a way of resistance.

San Diego Arab Film Festival Returns for Third Year

San Diego Arab Film Festival Returns for Third Year

Nov. 20
By Rebecca Romani

The San Diego Arab Film Festival promises a diverse line-up. It starts Thursday at the Museum of Photographic Arts.

Movie Review: 'Manuscripts Don't Burn' Smolders With Tension

Movie Review: 'Manuscripts Don't Burn' Smolders With Tension

Sept. 3
By Rebecca Romani

When personal ambition is conflated with the paranoia of the state, the results can be deadly. "Manuscripts Don't Burn" by Iranian director Mohammed Rasoulof, now playing at the Digital Gym in North Park, is a mesmerizing political thriller you don't want to miss.

Review: The Orphan of Zhao

Review: The Orphan of Zhao

Aug. 1
By Rebecca Romani

Will the Orphan seek revenge or allow his adopted father to raise him to the throne? The La Jolla Playhouse's production of the ancient tale of the Orphan of Zhao is a brilliant staging of love, revenge and power gone wrong with B.D. Wong as lead.

Review: 'Closed Curtain' Latest Fare From Iran's 'Wild Child'

Review: 'Closed Curtain' Latest Fare From Iran's 'Wild Child'

July 24
By Rebecca Romani

Currently playing at the Digital Gym on El Cajon Boulevard, "Closed Curtain" is the latest and perhaps most questioning film from Jafer Panahi, the "wild child" of Iranian CInema, now banned by the Iranian government from making films. "Closed Curtain" screens Thursday, July 24, at 7 pm.

Review: 'Korengal'

Review: 'Korengal'

June 30
By Rebecca Romani

Awed by its beauty, besieged by the locals, the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team of the U.S. Army is trying to survive their tour of duty in the "most dangerous place in the world," the Korengal Valley, Afghanistan, in Sebastian Junger's new documentary.

Interview: Annemarie Jacir, director of 'When I Saw You'

Interview: Annemarie Jacir, director of 'When I Saw You'

June 13
By Rebecca Romani

Now living in Jordan and traveling for projects, Annemarie Jacir talked to Cinema Junkie via email about her work, Palestinian film and thinking about "home."

Review: 'When I Saw You'

Review: 'When I Saw You'

June 13
By Rebecca Romani

Tarek looks across the border between Jordan and Israel, trying to see his home in Palestine. When, if ever, will he be able to go back?

Review: Cambodian Son

Review: Cambodian Son

May 2
By Rebecca Romani

Incarcerated at 16, deported back to Cambodia at 31, Kosal Khiev is poised to represent Cambodia at the Olympics. Will he make it? "Cambodian Son" screens Sunday at the Jacob's Center.

21st Annual San Diego Latino Film Festival Heads Toward Strong Finish

21st Annual San Diego Latino Film Festival Heads Toward Strong Finish

March 22
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani looks at the San Diego Latino Film Festival's longevity and makes some recommendations about what to see the final weekend of the festival, which runs through Sunday, March 23 at the Hazard Center.

Interview: Aaref Rodriguez, director of "Avenues"

Interview: Aaref Rodriguez, director of "Avenues"

March 22
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani talked to Aaref Rodriguez about his new feature, "Avenues," an intimate portrait of a gang member trying to make a new life for himself.

Review: 'Avenues'

Review: 'Avenues'

March 21
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani takes a look at what happens when a Latino gang member returns to his barrio from prison and must choose between his gang family and making a new life in "Avenues," which screened this past weekend as an official selection of this year's San Diego Latino Film Festival.

21st San Diego Latino FIlm Festival Promises Some Good Fare

21st San Diego Latino FIlm Festival Promises Some Good Fare

March 19
By Rebecca Romani

Offerings at the 21st San Diego Latino Film Festival promise more variety than what's currently in theaters. Guest blogger Rebecca Romani has suggestions.

Review: 'Margarita'

Review: 'Margarita'

March 18
By Rebecca Romani

"Margarita" (screening as part of the San Diego Latino Film Festival that runs through Sunday) is about a smart, talented nanny living in Canada, loved by the family who employs her and in love with her law student girlfriend. But when a bike accident reveals her illegal status, Margarita receives four marriage proposals that would allow her stay in the country. Which one will she choose...if any? Read guest blogger Rebecca Romani's review.

Review: 'Caesar Must Die'

Review: 'Caesar Must Die'

March 12
By Rebecca Romani

What happens when a member of the Mafia is cast as Cesare in an Italian prison version of Julius Ceasar? Who will live and who will die? Guset blogger Rebecca Romani recommends seeing "Cesare deve morire" for the Ides of March.

Review: 'Valentino's Ghost'

Review: 'Valentino's Ghost'

Jan. 23
By Rebecca Romani

Guest reviewer Rebecca Romani says "Valentino's Ghost," currently screening at Digital Gym Cinema on El Cajon Boulevard, might make you think about how the Middle East is portrayed in Middle America.

Interview: Michael Singh, Director Of 'Valentino's Ghost'

Interview: Michael Singh, Director Of 'Valentino's Ghost'

Jan. 23
By Rebecca Romani

The Middle East has served as a major setting in films from Rudolph Valentino's "The Sheik" to "Argo," but over the years the representation of Middle Easterners has shifted from romantic lead to Terrorist No. 1. Director Michael Singh talks about his new documentary. "Valentino's Ghost," currently screening at the Digital Gym Cinema on El Cajon Boulevard.

Sisters Behind The Camera: Arab Women Directors At Arab Film Fest

Sisters Behind The Camera: Arab Women Directors At Arab Film Fest

Nov. 16
By Rebecca Romani

More Arab women are occupying the director's chair, and one documentary short by Sara Ishaq of Yemen, screening at the San Diego Arab Film Festival, has been short listed for an Oscar.

San Diego's Arab Film Festival Back For Its Second Year

San Diego's Arab Film Festival Back For Its Second Year

Nov. 15
By Rebecca Romani

Films from the Arab world are a rarity in San Diego, but this weekend promises to be a taste of film and video currently coming out of the Middle East.

Preview: San Diego Italian Film Festival

Preview: San Diego Italian Film Festival

Oct. 25
By Rebecca Romani

It's the Year of Italy, and the San Diego Italian Film Festival has an intriguing lineup.

Review: 'The Citizen'

Review: 'The Citizen'

Sept. 11
By Rebecca Romani

A Syrian immigrates to the U.S. on September 10, 2001 to find the American Dream...and gets much more than he bargained for. Guest blogger Rebecca Romani reviews "The Citizen" (opening Friday at the Digital Gym Cinema).

Review: 'Broken'

Review: 'Broken'

July 22
By Rebecca Romani

Guest Blogger Rebecca Romani says "Broken" (currently playing at the Digital Gym Cinema) is a well-crafted story of dysfunctional life in North London.

Review: 'La Camioneta'

Review: 'La Camioneta'

July 6
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani recommends "La Camioneta" (back for an encore screening at the Digital Gym), which follows a typical American yellow school bus as it travels down to Guatemala to start its new life.

Review: 'The Lesser Blessed'

Review: 'The Lesser Blessed'

June 29
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani looks the recent art film, "The Lesser Blessed," about a First Nation teenager in a small northern Canadian town and the secret that haunts him- bleak, but worth a look.

Festival Screening: 'One Day in September- El Patiente Interno'

Festival Screening: 'One Day in September- El Patiente Interno'

March 16
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani recommends the story of one man who tried to assassinate the President of Mexico...and missed.

Final Day Of The San Diego Latino Film Festival

Final Day Of The San Diego Latino Film Festival

March 15
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani says the last days of the San Diego Latino Film Festival has had some hits and misses.

Festival Highlight: San Diego Latino Film Festival Expands For 20th

Festival Highlight: San Diego Latino Film Festival Expands For 20th

March 12
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani suggests going to the drive-in at this year's San Diego Latino Film Festival.

Festival Highlight: Looking At 20 Years Of Latino Cinema

Festival Highlight: Looking At 20 Years Of Latino Cinema

March 12
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani looks back on the 20 years of Latino cinema highlighted at the San Diego Latino Film Festival.

Festival Highlight: Documentaries At The San Diego Latino Film Fest...

Festival Highlight: Documentaries At The San Diego Latino Film Festival

March 7
By Rebecca Romani

Guest blogger Rebecca Romani suggests going beyond the feature film at the 20th Annual San Diego Latino Film Festival.