Image of movie Faya Dayi
Image of movie Faya Dayi
Image of movie Faya Dayi

Faya Dayi

Jessica Beshir
Ethiopia, United States, Qatar 2021
118 min
OV w/ EN subtitles

Many Oromo people feel “exiled within their own country” in multi-national Ethiopia. They find solace in their religion, a Sufi brand of Islam. Many also resort to khat, a local plant that has similar effects to amphetamines. Khat is a state of mind as well as the basis for a huge economy in Beshir’s somber FAYA DAYI. The black-and-white imagery is the most apparent distancing effect in this documentary, which somehow creates an immersive effect at the same time.
Several protagonists feature as representatives of a torn community: two young boys dream of passage to Europe, hopefully via Egypt, which already seems very far away. A young woman named Fatima is rejected from a relationship in which she had hoped to find stability. A young man desperately strives not to become like his father, who has fallen prey to khat.
Jessica Beshir was born to an Ethiopian father and a Mexican mother and has lived both in Harar in Ethiopia and in New York. With FAYA DAYI, she creates a portrait of her homeland both from the / as well as from the imagined perspective of those consuming khat, which is conjured up with considerable artistry: the film is “stoned” and critical, mystical and sharply observational at the same time. (Bert Rebhandl)

Jessica Beshir: HE WHO DANCES ON WOOD (2016, K), HAIRAT (2017, K), HEROIN (2017, K)

  • Mohammed Arif
  • Bekala Ismail
  • Ibrahim Mohammed
  • Hashim Abdi
  • Wedadi Ederis
  • Biniam Yonas
  • Jessica Beshir
  • Jessica Beshir
  • Dustin Waldman
  • Jeanne Applegate
  • William Basinski
  • Adrian Aniol
  • Kaethe Hostetter
Merkhana Films, XTR, Neon Heart Productions, Flies Collective


Fri 22 Oct
OV w/ EN subtitles
Thu 28 Oct
Stadtkino im Künstlerhaus
OV w/ EN subtitles
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