Nov. 16, 2018 Staff Report
The Museum of the Moving Image will be screening “Of Fathers and Sons,” an intimate portrait of two Middle Eastern boys and their jihadist papa, over the course of the next two weeks.
The director, Berlin-based Talal Derki, spent two years with a close-knit family in a sandy desert compound in war-torn Syria to get his footage. He slowly gained the trust of the father, an Al-Nusra fighter named “Abu Osama,” and was able to capture the family’s daily life.
There are scenes of Abu Osama’s work as a soldier, including car bomb attacks, but Derki focuses mainly on elder son Osama, who is 10 at the onset, and his younger brother Ayman. They clearly love, admire, and obey their father, who has six other children, but conflict is brewing. Osama is ready to follow the path of jihad, but Ayman wants to get an education.