Many films offer look inside Mideast culture
By Amelia Nielson-Stowell
Deseret Morning News PARK CITY — In the middle of a war in Iraq, national gay rights debate and controversial immigration reform, it's no surprise that many of the films at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival have turned to politics on the Middle East are giving Americans a new perspective on that culture. "The importance of our presence here is to make known another point of view of our culture," said Jocelyne Saab, writer and director of the Lebanese film, "Kiss Me Not on the Eyes," in the world cinema competition at Sundance. "War doesn't change anything. It makes it worse. It's the look from the Western part that has to change." While many Americans' image of the Arab world, Islam and the Middle East is largely based on stories and images from the U.S. media, Saab and other filmmakers urged Americans to educate themselves and take a serious look at Middle Eastern cinema during a Sundance panel, "The Other Side of the Story."

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