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Je Veux Voir (I Want to See)

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Directed by | Joana Hadjithomas

Genre documentary  |  Length: 72mins  |  Year of production: 2008

Directed by renowned Lebanese artists Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joreige, Je Veux Voir is a fictiondocumentary hybrid and the directors� latest exploration of conflict and its visual representation. The film�s premise finds Catherine Deneuve on location in Beirut months after the 2006 war. Anxious �to see� the aftermath of the war, Deneuve is escorted around Beirut and southern Lebanon by local actor Rabih Mrouh. As this �tour� proceeds into increasingly damaged areas of the country it becomes unpredictable, its purpose and path growing ever less certain. Hadjithomas and Joreige have produced a filmessay that subtly explores ways in which media and celebrity conspire to make invisible the very things they aspire �to see�. Lebanon�s devastation appears fleetingly, figuring as a form of cinematic back overwhelmed by the weight of Deneuve�s celebrity. The destruction she witnesses is steadily reduced to a set of stagings for the encounter between this legend of the silver screen and a local actor still shaken by the immediacy of the war. Visually accomplished and with a fine original score, the film won the top documentary prize at the 2009 Gijon International Cine Festival, and was celebrated by film critic Peter Bradshaw for its �potent and intriguing cinema of ideas�.