In My Mother’s Arms

Atia Al-Daradji

In a dangerous suburb of Baghdad, an idealistic social worker named Husham is looking for orphaned street children, most of whom are boys. He provides them with refuge in a small house, where several children sleep in one bed and eat on the ground. Then, the landlord gives them their notice.

When the landlord demands that the 32 orphans vacate the premises within two weeks, a panicked search for new shelter ensues. Tirelessly, Husham knocks on the doors of uncooperative agencies, and even his wife thinks he cares more about the orphaned children than his own family. Meanwhile, we see how the boys help each other with homework and practice singing an emotional song that recalls their mothers, and many of them shed tears.

The film follows several of these orphans, many of whom have been traumatised by the loss of their families and by events in war-torn Iraq. Without commentary, and in a raw, almost home-video style, this film gives the viewer a real sense of being in the orphanage – especially when a bomb explodes.

Credits

Subtitles
EN
Director
Atia Al-Daradji
Country
Iraq, Netherlands, The, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom
Type
Documentary
Duration
86 minutes
Themes
children and youth, house & land issues, evictions, war & armed conflict
Year
2011