• 113'
  • Syria
  • 2002
Sacrifices, the second film in fourteen years by Mohammad, is a dark family tale with a political undertone. Death, fear and power are important themes in the visual and symbolic film. The Arabic title (translated literally: box of life) refers to the magic lantern. In a Syrian family that lives in poverty and isolation, three cousins grow up without a name: their grandfather dies before he could (or rather wanted to) pass on his name to one of them. The three nameless boys grow up in a harsh world and all three develop a technique of their own to survive. Each in his own way seeks liberation from his nameless status. One in subservience, another in love, the third in power. When the father of one of them returns from the war in the Golan Heights, the power relations change. The lighting of the interior scenes can be described as painterly, almost Rembrandt esque. The outdoor shots, set in the hills of Northern Syria, profit from beautiful natural light. The final result is a oriëntal surrealism that is occasionally reminiscent of Paradzhanov, a comparison Mohammad can be proud of.
Ossama Mohammed
Countries of production
Syria, France
Production Year
Festival Edition
IFFR 2003
Betacam SP PAL
Original title
Sundûq al-dunyâ
Production Companies
AMIP, National Film Organization Syria