About civil courage in times of totalitarian threats.
A woman, played by Lina Saneh, wants to make a contemporary remake of Ettore Scola’s film ‘Una giornata particolare’, in which Italian fascism and Hitler’s visit to Mussolini form the backdrop. In her renewed script a former left wing activist and a divorced housewife meet in Beirut just after the Israeli attack on Lebanon. Both are lonely and uneasy about the seething unrest that prevails outside. Before she can start working on her film the cinematographer must submit her script to an official Lebanese censor, played by Rabih Mroué. Throughout their conversation her photographic novel gradually takes shape on the big screen. Photo Romance is a complex study of civil courage in the face of totalitarian threats. For Scola this was fascism, for Mroué and Saneh it was the ‘cold civil war’ under which they live. The combination of the different levels of narrative, visibly deconstruct both the realism of the film and the staged illusion. Photo Romance is a subtle and topical performance which balances meticulously humor and despair.
Subtitles in English