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ENOUGH Lebanon's Darkest Hour



Documentary by Daizy Gedeon second feature documentary
Australia  june 2021 90 minutes (in post)
One of Bruno Chatelin's BEST FOR FESTS Cannes Market Premiere July 13, Palais H 11:30

ENOUGH! Lebanon’s Darkest Hour follows Australian-Lebanese filmmaker Daizy Gedeon’s personal and independent introspection into how her ancestral homeland, the place her family was forced to flee in the 1970s because of the Civil War, has ended up in a state of complete catastrophe. It is a story of awakening in which Daizy is forced to abandon her idealism about Lebanon and face the cold, harsh truth about the country’s dark underbelly which is its most sinister enemy.

Daizy prosecutes the case against the corrupt political class which has reduced a proud people to beg for garbage collection instead of greatness and negotiate potholes rather than peace.

ENOUGH! is the plea and the prayer, the feeling and fierce determination of the 4.5 million Lebanese in Lebanon as well as the 16 million members of the Lebanese diaspora scattered around the world, whose hearts continue to bleed for a homeland they are desperate to return to and so deeply want to believe in...once again.

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Best for Fests Enough! Lebanon's Darkest Hour - Director's statement

Daizy Gedeon
Filmmaker, Journalist, Entrepreneur
Dream Creations International Pty Ltd
Level 2, 72 Campbell Street
Surry Hills, NSW, 2010, AUSTRALIA
P: + 61 401 638 444
Daizy@dreamcreationsintl.com
 
ENOUGH!
Lebanon’s Darkest Hour
DIRECTOR’S STATEMENT - DAIZY GEDEON
 
I began this film in 2016 after years of watching and witnessing the growing disillusionment, frustration, degradation, and poverty among the people of Lebanon.
I had regularly returned to my ancestral homeland since I released my debut film, Lebanon…Imprisoned Splendour, in 1996 which addressed the misperception of Lebanon, as portrayed by the western media, as a land of terror, car bombings and kidnappings because of the 15 year civil war from 1975-1990. But over the next 20 years, instead of seeing strides in growth and development, hope and opportunity, I experienced anger, desperation, and hopelessness among the people who were being forced to endure a system that couldn’t even provide reliable basic services and infrastructure – no roads, no clean water, no electricity, no garbage collection, no jobs, no justice...
As I investigated the cause of the suffering and hardship I discovered that the corrupt political system was supporting an archaic kleptocracy that served only big business and the traditional warlords whose stranglehold on the instruments of politics and power were choking the country and its people - my people.
This compelled me to leave the life I had built and my family, time and again over the next four years, to make this film and search for answers to explain how we ended up in such a state of catastrophe, and to lift the veil on the endemic culture of corruption that allowed for the calamity of errors and omissions that enabled the perfect setting, for the perfect storm that resulted in the perfect blast on August 4, 2020.
My goal in making this film is to give a voice to the people and a platform for their grievances, suffering, and loss no more pronounced than ever with the oppressive economic crisis and the compounding impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic. The way I have tried to bring this story to the world was by making it personal and taking the audience on the journey with me so they could experience the emotional trauma that the Lebanese are enduring.
I traveled around the world and spoken to many members of the Lebanese diaspora in France, England, USA, Brazil,
Canada, Mexico, and my home country, Australia, in my determination to gauge, from as wide a cross-section of people as possible, from all faiths, beliefs, ages, and persuasions, what the truth was and how we could save our beloved country.
From 2017-2019 I managed to secure exclusive interviews with current and former political leaders including the Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri (July 2019 first interview given to a western journalist in 5 years), former Foreign
Minister Gebran Bassil, prominent Hezbollah minister, Mohammed Fneich (2019 first interview given by any member of Hezbollah to a western journalist since 2006), Dr Samir Geagea, Executive Chairman of the Lebanese Forces, former justice ministers Salim Jreissait and Ashraf Rifi, the heads of various political factions, the controversial Central Bank Governor, Riad Salame, the first truly Independent Member of Parliament elected in the 2018 elections, Paula Yacoubian, among many others.
By the end, I had completed over 200 interviews including those with whistle-blower, Alain Bifani, who was Director-
General of the Ministry of Finance from 2000-2020, and Civil Activist, Dr Carmen Geha Professor of Public Administration at the American University of Beirut and academic and author, Thanassis Cambanis, we blow the lid on the under-the-table, pie-sharing deals that have permitted many of the current political leaders, their families, and cronies to remain in power for decades. Through our investigative journalism, we are able to join the dots and understand why and how the fabric of corruption persists and is permitted, despite all of the opposition, awareness, and rejection from world leaders, global institutions as well and the citizens.
I address the failings of the confessional political system, once universally hailed as the model of co-existence by other nations and Pope John Paull II, and reveal it to be a weak and impractical structure that continues to provide the ideal environment and vulnerabilities that sanctioned the current octopus-like oligarchy to be created, and whose sting has resulted in countless assassinations, untold, unanswered destruction, and a once sophisticated people and society to be on the brink of becoming one of the most impoverished societies and a failed state.
I explore who and how we can stop these oligarchs but also reveal grave concerns as to whether they can actually be stopped because they just don’t care. THEY are in complete control and have gained absolute power.
POWER CORRUPTS AND ABSOLUTE POWER CORRUPTS ABSOLUTELY!
But I discovered one spring of hope lying dormant - the sleeping giant that is the Lebanese diaspora who total around 16 million people spread across five continents...but the uncertainty remains if this powerful force will awaken in time to save Lebanon from falling to the lions and relegate it to the growing scrapheap of failed and forgotten nation states.
“One should never write off the Lebanese”, former UK Ambassador to Lebanon, Tom Fletcher reminds us... “for they are the only race to have been forced to overcome the odds more times than any other people in history, and against the fiercest and most feared opponents.”
But the difference this time is that the enemy is the Lebanese themselves.

The last question to remain is:

Are the good and just Lebanese ENOUGH to end LEBANON’s DARKEST HOUR?

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About ENOUGH Lebanon's Darkest Hour

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