Filmmaker Maher Abi-Samra returns to the neighborhood of his youth, Ramel el Ali, in Beirut's southern suburb. Settled in the 1950's by the mostly Shiite community from the villages of southern Lebanon and the Beka Valley, this community grew on the rubble of the civil war. By the early 1980's it had become one of the strongholds of the Islamic Party of God, the Hezbollah.
WOMEN OF HEZBOLLAH is a portrait of two women, Zeinab and Khadjie, activists in the Hezbollah, and an examination of the personal, social and political factors of their commitment.
"A stimulating and complex picture of Islamism, gender relations, feminism, and nationalism. The film helps reconceptualize the framework of female Islamic militancy in the Middle East."—Al Jadid: A Review & Record of Arab Culture and Arts
2005 National Women's Studies Association Film Festival
2002 Vermont Women's Film Festival
2001 Amsterdam International Documentary Festival
"Highly Recommended! A historical perspective from which the viewer can distill a clearer picture of the nature of the Islamic Party of God... thus putting a face of human emotion to a topic often foreign to Western, non-Muslim audiences. Very well balanced... excellent historical primer on the social and political conditions contributing to this culture."—Educational Media Reviews Online
"The attitude of the film neither endorses nor condemns Hezbollah itself, but it does look on in wonderment that mothers would accept, and even encourage, their sons' martyrdom in suicide attacks."—The Memphis Flyer
"A revelation!"—Le Monde