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Art War

2013 DOK Leipzig, German Competition Documentary Film, Filmpreis "Leipziger Ring", DOK im Knast
Germany | 2013 | 87 min. | Arabic, English, German | English, German subtitles | German Premiere
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Art War | Art War

Art is a weapon! This motto still holds true in Cairo. After 30 years of autocracy, President Mubarak was swept away by his people. Now the street belongs to them, the young rebels and artists. Graffiti sprayers and painters make the walls speak. They recount the days of fighting in blood-smeared portraits, the time of anarchy in wild collages, the attempts of liberation from a suppressed sexuality in obscene pictures. Walls become a chronicle of the rush of events; electro pop and rap supply a thrilling soundtrack. Euphoria is followed by overpainting and destruction. Snipers are at work, aiming at the protesters’ eyes. The revolution is no more romantic than this underground art, whose aim is to provoke and take risks, is accommodating.
In one episode, director Marco Wilms draws a line back to the historic murals of the age of the Pharaohs. In a country with a high illiteracy rate, such traditions become a tried and tested medium of revolt. In a wild tour de force through the past two years of permanent and radical upheavals, “Art War” shows the dangerous dance on the volcano as a trip driven forward by the colours and rhythms of the Egyptian painters and musicians.

Cornelia Klauß
Original Title: Art War
Country: Germany
Year: 2013
Language: Arabic, English, German
Subtitle: English, German
Runtime: 87 min.
Format: DCP
Color: Colour
Director: Marco Wilms
Producer: Marlen Burghardt, Marco Wilms
Cinematographer: Marco Wilms, Abdelrhman Zin Eldin, Emanuele Ira, Bashir Mohamed Wagih, Ali Khaled
Editor: Stephan Talneau
Animation: Mohamed Khaled
Music: Ramy Essam, Bosaina and Wetrobots, Tonbüro Berlin
Script: Marco Wilms
Marco Wilms

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The texts to the Documentary Competition films and the International Programme films were written by the members of the selection committee. All quotes from DOK Leipzig catalogue articles must be identified as such and cite the author’s name. All articles where no author’s name is given are production notes.