ABC Film Challenge – World Cinema – P – Insyriated (2017) Movie Review

This is under P because of the director Philippe Van Leeuw

Director: Philippe Van Leeuw

Writer: Philippe Van Leeuw (Screenplay)

Starring: Hiam Abbass, Diamand Bou Abboud, Juliette Navis, Mohsen Abbas, Moustapha Al Kar, Alissar Kaghadou

Plot: A mother attempts to keep her family safe as war rages and a sniper lies in wait outside her home. This nerve-wracking study of life in Damascus won an Audience Award at Berlinale.

Runtime: 1 Hour 25 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Intense Drama

Story: Insyriated starts as we meet Oum Yazan (Abbass) who is living with her family in a warzone, the streets are kept empty because of a ruthless sniper, with her children, Delhani (Navis) Yara (Kaghadou), Aliya (Halabi), they are joined by a neighbour Halima (Abboud) and grandpa.

The group keep themselves quiet and safe during any of the attacks being felt on the streets, showing they will do whatever is necessary to make sure they stay in the home and safe from all the dangers of war.

Thoughts on Insyriated

Characters – Oum Yazan is the mother and daughter, home owner that doesn’t want to see her own family killed with the war outside their door, she wants to keep them all safe with strict rules that can make this happen, she sees the horrors outside the door and must turn away from helping anyone else. Halima has just had a baby, with her husband out for resources, find himself shot, only for Halima not to know this, she is planning on leaving once he returns, only here she is trapped for the horrendous ordeal of unwanted visitors. Delhani is one of the elder children, she witnesses the shot and does help around the house more than the rest of the children. We do have the rest of the family that work and need protecting from the outside world.

PerformancesWhen it comes to the performances Hiam Abbass and Diamand Bou Abboud are the stars of the show, going through the most intense scenes, dealing with the biggest traumas of war, while needing to remain strong for the rest of the family.

StoryThe story here shows a family living in the middle of a war-torn city that haven’t left because it is their home, we see how they must look to survive the terrors outside their door. The story shows how much fear can be held within one family, how they have little option but to stay together through the ordeals. We see how they get through bombing nights, needing to hide out from visitors all in an attempt to survive the world they have become trapped in. we are kept on the edge of our seats as we like family members know the fate of Halima’s husband, as she waits for his return and we are stuck waiting to see if they family can make it through the horrors of war.

War The war side of this film shows us just how dangerous living in the middle of a warzone would be, how risky it would be to stay and how people will do anything to stay safe.

SettingsThe film keeps us in one single apartment, it shows how close the family are, how they must look to be together through the horror filled night battles, showing how trapped they have become.


Scene of the Movie – Hardest scene it the visitors, the scene you will remember the most for the pure shock in it.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – Nothing.

Final Thoughts This is a powerful look at how war does affect everyone trapped in the middle, no matter the age and how it is always going to be hard to walk away from their home.

Overall: Powerful.

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