French Film Depicts Marcel Khalifa’s Art Life
The Arab World Institute in Paris screened for the first time the documentary film “Marceill Khalifa, al Oud Khareq al Qudsiyat”, which depicts the life history of the Lebanese singer and musician Marcel Khalifa.
The film directed by the French director Pierre de Boy which was screened last Monday is about the trial of Khalifa in Beirut for his song Ana Yousef Ya Abi (I am Yousef Dad) written by the Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish and containing verses from the Koran. The film also tackles the singer’s various stages in the course of his artistic career.
The film features testimonies by a number of the Khalifa’s colleagues who witnessed his parade from the beginning. For example, Mahmoud Darwish who was in Beirut during the trial to participate in a conference on Jerusalem expressed his full confidence in the singer who sometimes, according to Darwish, does not consult him concerning a poem he chooses for a song.
Some film scenes were shot at the house where the singer was born in the Lebanese village of Amshit and others in a house in Beirut where he lived during the civil war and composed many of his songs under heavy shelling.
In the film Khalifa describes various stages of his life and art career and his ties with Lebanon, the beautiful country which was destroyed by its own citizens. This is in addition to his village, which had changed a lot when he returned to it after 17 years of being away.
The film also contains scenes about Khalifa’s concerts where the audiences respond to him with enthusiasm and also some of his songs, which spread among people particularly the youth. These include Ummi (My Mother), al Tayyarah (Plane) al Bahriyah (Marine) and Mohammed Yasuon Saghir dedicated to the Martyr child Mohammed al Dorrah.
“The film does not focus on the trial of the singer but rather takes it as a starting point,” the director told AFP, adding that the trial was illegitimate and unfair because it involved a progressive person who fought for freedom and democracy in the Arab world. He described Khalifa as a man of wonderful, progressive and open ideas who devotes his music for their service and defending the just causes in the Arab world in particular and the whole world in general -- Albawaba.com