Talking About Trees


February 02, 2021February 08, 2021
9:00 AM10:44 PM /
San Diego
Stream the film across the US from Feb 2-8 using booking link below
QA Session with the Filmmaker
February 05, 2021
1:00 PM /
San Diego
RSVP here for the live, FREE + globally available Q&A featuring Mohamed Osman, Assistant Researcher, Human Rights Watch
QA Session with the Filmmaker

At a time when many of us long to be back in the cinema seats, Talking about Trees, winner of the Berlinale Best Documentary Award, affirms a core belief - in the cultural and politically powerful experience of coming together to enjoy a good film.

For the last 30 years in Sudan, cinema has been banned. After a military coup, cinemas were closed, filmmakers arrested and the careers of four Sudanese friends and promising filmmakers were halted before they began. The freedom to make and share films is their driving passion, and one they long to bring back to Sudan. On a mission to revitalize the country’s film culture, this dedicated group of friends decide to rent a dilapidated, old open-air cinema for a large, free screening of a Hollywood film. But can this committed group of friends pull off their first public film screening in a country where government approval is needed, power cuts are frequent, there is no film equipment, and calls to prayer drown out the sound of the film? This beautifully shot feature debut about the value of cultural history, freedom of expression, and the cultural and political power of being able to see something on the big screen, couldn’t be more timely.

Watch at your own pace anytime between Feb 2-Feb 8, 2021, or join us and watch-along before the live Q&A

February 5, 2021
5:25pm (PST) / 8:25pm (EST) : Press play and begin watching the film.
6:55pm (PST) / 9:55pm (PST): Grab a quick snack and refill your beverage
7pm (PST) / 10pm (EST) : Join us for the live Q&A on Zoom (RSVP required.)

We do not want the cost of entry to these films to be a barrier for participation in these events. If the price of buying a ticket to this film would prevent you from participating, please email the following address ( + we will send you a free ticket code. We have set aside a set # of tickets per film on a first come first-served basis. Once the free tickets are no longer available, the code will no longer work. For anyone that purchases a ticket, we appreciate your support. Your ticket purchase enables us to make tickets free for those who might otherwise be unable to watch. This also allows the festival to support the filmmakers for sharing their work in our festival to support the arts organizations bringing this work to you and for the festival to cover the cost of hosting the films online.

Suhaib Gasmelbari
Country of Production: 
France Sudan Germany Chad Qatar
Arabic, English, Russian with english subtitles
Filmmaker Bio(s): 
Suhaib Gasmelbari

Suhaib Gasmelbari was born in 1979 in Sudan. He studied Cinema in France at the University of Paris VIII. He has written and directed several short films, both fiction and documentary. Talking About Trees is his first feature film. He is also a researcher with a special focus on audio-visual archives. Through his research he was able to find some long-lost Sudanese films, and actively participates in international and local projects for saving and digitizing Sudanese films, including those of Ibrahim Shaddad, Suleiman Mohamed Ibrahim and Altayeb Mahdi.

Presented in partnership with: