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Of Fathers and Sons(Die Kinder des Kalifats)

Syrian director Talal Derki returns to his homeland to document the daily life of a radical Islamist family. After gaining their trust, Derki closely follows brothers Osama and Ayman, providing an extremely rare insight into what it means to grow up with a father whose only dream is to establish an Islamic Caliphate.
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WHAT ARE CRITICS SAYING?

50

The New York Times by Ben Kenigsberg

Of Fathers and Sons is ultimately more impressive for its access than it is revealing of drives or beliefs. If Derki’s goal was to capture what causes ideology to spread, he and his camera look without seeing.
75

RogerEbert.com by Brian Tallerico

Watching young men become militarized is one of those gut-churning documentary topics. And yet the main subject of Of Fathers and Sons would argue that this is the only path to freedom and to happiness. The best parts of Talal Derki’s award-winning film not only seek to understand that but to reason with it.
75

Slant Magazine by Derek Smith

The film's verité approach risks humanizing Abu Osama, but we eventually gain a complex understanding of the banality of his evil.
80

Variety by Guy Lodge

The result is as despairing as any portrait of close-knit family and dedicated parenthood can be, adeptly blending sensationalism with domestic intimacy, and sincerely eye-opening in its portrayal of inherited Islamist fervor.
80

The Hollywood Reporter by Neil Young

An admirably audacious feat of documentarian access, Of Fathers and Sons is of obvious topical and anthropological interest as a glimpse into the gradual radicalization of young males and the deep community ties which underpin the process.

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