Subtitled “Chronicle of a Present Absentee” and the final installment in a trilogy that previously gave us “Chronicle of a disappearance” and “Divine intervention,” “The time that remains” is a new film by Elia Suleiman set among the Israelo-Arab community and shot largely in homes and places in which Suleiman’s family once lived. Inspired by his father’s diaries, letters his mother sent to family members who had fled the Israeli occupation and the director’s own memories, the film spans from 1948 until the present and tells of the saga of Suleiman’s family. Inserting himself as a silent observer Suleiman trains a keen eye on the absurdities of life in Nazareth.
Born in Nazareth in 1960 to Arab parents, Elia Suleiman studied cinema at New York University and made his first short films there before moving to Jerusalem in 1994 and creating a film department at Birzeit University, the first college of higher education in the Palestinian territories. He emerged on the international scene at the 1996 Venice Film Festival with “Chronicle,” which won the prize for Best First Film. In 2002, he wrote, directed and starred in “Divine intervention,” a series of interlinked sketches set in a middle-class area of Nazareth and at an Israeli checkpoint on the road between Jerusalem and Ramallah, which won the Jury Prize at Cannes.
Opens Friday, January 7th at IFC Center in New York. Visit the producer’s site for additional images and a peek at the trailer.