The movie tells us so many things about Lebanese civil war. The film is obviously about the particular case of Lebanon, and the lack of context about what created the conditions for the civil war causes the film’s conclusion about the perversity of sectarianism and factionalism to feel cliche.
Though its details are fictional, this chronicle is impressively nuanced in its rendering of Lebanese politics and society in the 1970s and ’80s. As a young woman, Nawal provokes the violent disapproval of her family when she falls love with a Muslim and flees her hometown for the capital. Subsequently, as a student and an activist, a clandestine militant and a political prisoner, she crosses back and forth between the warring groups. In one of the most wrenching scenes the Christian identity she had repudiated saves her life. Then Nawal joins the militia that opposes the Christian ultra-nationalists massacring Palestinians in the south because she wants “to teach the enemy what life taught me.” The fate of Nawal’s lost son reinforces the idea that during Lebanon’s civil war, people found themselves fighting on any side for totally arbitrary reasons — a naive, simplistic way of understanding the country’s history.It’s clear that Nawal is a hopeful and stubborn character she always supports what is true for society what is true to her.