Speed Sisters


Wed, 05/05/2021 - 6:30pm


This film screening and discussion is co-sponsored by the Pima County Public Library (PCPL). To watch the film during the event, you will need to have a PCPL library card and PCPL Kanopy account (or access to the film through your own local library). Pima County residents (or current UA students) can easily obtain a free PCPL card and Kanopy account. Link and instructions at the bottom of the page.

Join us for the short contextual presentation preceding the film and for the Q & A session at the end!

Speed Sisters

Speed Sisters posterFrom the Hollywood Reporter-

When one of the profiled figures in a documentary comments, "The smell of tear gas reminds me of my childhood," it's obvious that we're not in Kansas anymore. Rather, Amber Fares' film is set in Palestine, chronicling the Middle East's first all-women race car team. Delivering a lively portrait of its trailblazing subjects while examining the cultural and political complications attendant to their pursuit of becoming the region's "Fastest Women Driver [sic]," Speed Sisters is an eye-opening doc that succeeds in its goal of shattering stereotypes.

The team consists of drivers Marah, Mona, Betty and Noor, as well as their manager Maysoon, all of whom reveal sharply distinct personalities. Marah, the reigning champion, is perhaps the best driver of the bunch, with her family enduring great financial sacrifices to support her efforts. The talented but erratic Noor struggles with the problem of memorizing the racing routes that are only announced days in advance. Mona is less interested in winning than in racing for the sheer fun of it. And the blonde, half-Latina Betty is the team's resident sex symbol, a role of which she's all too aware.

The film details the myriad problems the women encounter while racing for the Palestinian Motor Sports and Motorcycle Federation, founded in 2005. Finding places to practice is difficult, with the team forced to train in a parking lot located next to an Israeli detention center. The races are held in such locations as a vegetable market and a helicopter pad, although in recent years they've found a home base in Jericho. Simply getting around is a logistical nightmare, with Israeli military checkpoints omnipresent.

Interweaving the personal stories with rough-hewn footage of the racing competitions, Speed Sisters is an entertaining portrait of its engaging subjects who have become instant role models for young Palestinian women.

Watch the trailer

Presenter: Sajedeh Hosseini, PhD student, Persian and Iranian Studies
Director: Amber Fares
Language: Arabic and English (with English subtitles)
Length: 80 minutes

Location: This event will be on Zoom.
Passcode: 153470

A hardwired connection to the internet (i.e. not WiFi) and shutting down all other programs on your device will likely provide the best picture and sound quality. Please turn off your audio and video for the duration of the event unless called upon. Questions for the Q&A session can be submitted through the chat function AFTER the film screening has ended. Please do NOT send a chat message to everyone during the film screening or it may pop up on everyone’s screens and interrupt the film. If you’re having technical difficulties, you should send a private chat message to Megan Young. Attendees will be sent to watch the film on Kanopy after a contextual presentation and will be asked to return for the Q&A session.

Those who are new to Zoom can refer to the Zoom Help Center for instructions on how to use Zoom.

How to obtain a PCPL library card and Kanopy account
The public library has created a way for Pima County residents to obtain a library card remotely. You can either get an eCard for digital media and online resources only or a standard library card. Either will work for the film screening. It might take a business day or two to get the card after applying. Apply now to start using your local library! Go to https://www.library.pima.gov/getalibrarycard/ for information on how to apply and what you can access with your PCPL library card.

Current UA students who are not residing in Pima County this semester due to the pandemic can still get an eCard. Contact Megan Young at myoung@arizona.edu for instructions.

Once you have a PCPL library card, you will need to create a PCPL Kanopy account at https://pimalibrary.kanopy.com/. An important thing to know about the PCPL Kanopy service is that you are limited to watching 10 films per month, so make sure you don’t watch all 10 before this event!

Privacy for PCPL patrons
We are not collecting names of attendees. If you wish to remain anonymous even through your username during the event, do not use your real name when asked to provide a name when joining the meeting. If you already have a Zoom account, log in to your profile before the event, click edit next to your name, and change your display name.

To request disability-related accommodations that would ensure your full participation in this event, please contact: myoung@email.arizona.edu.