Broken Keys

Lebanon, 2020
110 minutes, Color
Official website

In a war-decimated Syrian village under the thumb of ISIS thugs, aspiring pianist Karim (Tarek Yaacoub) holds on to his dream of escaping to Europe to pursue life as a musician. To pay the smuggler, he'll need to sell his beloved piano. But Karim and his cousin live a perilous existence, sharing a bombed-out building with neighbors, some more sympathetic than others. Among the perils, music itself is anathema to the ISIS extremists, and they'll gladly shoot the piano and the piano player. In expanding his Student Academy Award-winning short film Nocturne in Black into his first feature film, Columbia University-trained Lebanese director Jimmy Keyrouz continued racking up honors: Broken Keys was selected for Cannes and was Lebanon's entry to the Academy Awards ®. Keyrouz expertly utilizes his fine cast, sets that include actual war ruins in Iraq, and an original score by his famous compatriot Gabriel Yared.—Judy Bloch

In Arabic with English subtitles

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