Get curated editors’ picks, peeks behind the scenes, film recommendations and more.
Warning: this film features flashing light that could be unsuitable for photosensitive viewers.
A film that’s at once global and deeply personal, Five Years After the War features a young man named Timothée Dray sharing how he grew up trying to make sense of a complicated identity. The product of a ‘hook-up’ between an Iraqi refugee and a Jewish Parisian, Dray had difficulty placing himself within the modern world. Further complicating matters, he had no contact with his father, which meant he envisioned him as a cross between Darth Vader, Osama bin Laden and a brave exiled revolutionary. As Dray narrates his life story, a filmmaking team led by his cousin, the French director Samuel Albaric, borrows from his cultural references to animate the piece with a wide range of colourful styles. The lone exception is a touching live-action sequence in which Dray at long last meets, and demystifies, his father Jaffar Abdalla. With striking honesty and a rich visual verve, Albaric combines the mundane and extraordinary in Dray’s journey to weave an epic coming-of-age tale.
Directors: Samuel Albaric, Martin Wiklund, Ulysse Lefort
Tour the European architecture that dreamed of a wondrous, fictitious China
Trek alongside spiritual pilgrims on a treacherous journey across Pakistan
Thinkers and theories
Photographs offer a colonialist window to the past – one that must be challenged
Animals and humans
An artist and ants collaborate on an exhibit of ‘tiny Abstract Expressionist paintings’
How a curious question about colouring maps changed mathematics forever
Meaning and the good life
The world turns vivid, strange and philosophical for one plane crash survivor
The rise and fall of Kowloon Walled City, Hong Kong’s infamous urban monolith
Inside the unique creative space where ‘outsider’ artists find their form
When aggression is viewed as brilliance, it hurts women in science, and science itself