Reşeba: The Dark Wind
Panorama | Contemporary World Cinema
Kurdish director Hussein Hassan has made a film of the utmost urgency. Detailing ISIS’s genocidal attacks on the Yazidi people of Iraqi Kurdistan, it’s a taut, compelling drama that will resonate everywhere it’s seen—and it should be seen everywhere. Pero (Diman Zandi) and her fiancé Reko (Rekesh Shabaz) are cautiously looking forward to a good life together when their village is invaded; Pero is taken and sold into sexual slavery. When, mercifully, she’s reunited with Reko, she finds that she’s viewed as tainted by her peers…
Reşeba is a harrowing film, but it’s compelling, rewarding viewing nonetheless. The pleasure here comes from witnessing and sharing the artist’s empathy and compassion for his characters, and from seeing humanity brought to life in a way so many films don’t bother to attempt. These people testify to us with the truth of documentary but the power of fiction; they deserve to be seen, to be cared for, to be recognized as part of a conflict that we are distant from but cannot afford to turn our backs on.
"Hassan’s sensitive, muted handling of potentially explosive subject material has the undeniable ring of authenticity…"—Fionnuala Halligan, Screen
Best Fiction Feature, Dubai 16