99' 2017 Germany, Syria, Lebanon director: Talal Derki cinematography: Kahtan Hasson editing: Anne Fabini production: BASIS BERLIN Filmproduktion
Children trained by their father to be jihad martyrs.
Talal Derki, director of the award-winning Return to Homs, risked his life to spend more than two years filming the family of a Syrian Islamist associated with al-Qaeda. The resulting documentary shows the terrifying process of the indoctrination of children trained to sacrifice their lives in the "holy war" with the West. But the camera follows the protagonists not only during their spectacular training, the disarming of unexploded ordnance and Russian raids. Despite the drastic theme and the threatening atmosphere that is palpable in the film, Derki also captures moments of authentic intimacy between a father and his sons. He does not dehumanize his protagonists—he tries to understand them.