image from the film Neighbours

image from the film NEIGHBORS

In the early 80s, in a Syrian village bordering Turkey, young Sero attends school for the first time.

A new teacher has arrived with the goal of making strapping Pan-Arabic comrades out of the Kurdish children. To enable paradise to come to earth, he uses the rod to forbid the Kurdish language, orders the veneration of Assad and preaches hate of the Zionist enemy—the Jews.

The lessons upset and confuse Sero because his long-time neighbors are a friendly Jewish family. With a fine sense of humor and satire, the film depicts a childhood which manages to find light moments between dictatorship and dark drama.

The film was inspired by the director’s own bittersweet experiences.

Filmed in Kurdistan and Syria. Winner of the SF Film Critics Jury Prize at the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival 2021, and the Audience Award at the Boston Jewish Film Festival 2021.

Cosponsored with the Jewish Studies Program.

more info at this website:

In Kurdish, Arabic, English & Hebrew

Ithaca Premiere