Al Jazeera World



A weekly showcase of one-hour documentary films from across the Al Jazeera Network.


  • Painting in the Dark | Al Jazeera World

    15/06/2022 Duración: 45min

    Turkish artist Esref Armagan is one of the few blind commercial painters in the world. Blind from birth, he learned to draw by touching and copying carved shapes. As he grew older, Armagan adapted techniques which allowed him to add perspective to his work. A few critics suggested that his art was not his own, a claim refuted by those who witnessed him paint. Today, Armagan’s artwork is in demand internationally. He also mentors young visually impaired children, demonstrating how they can achieve their artistic dreams.

  • Med Hondo: A founding father of African cinema | Al Jazeera World

    01/06/2022 Duración: 46min

    The story of Mohamed "Med" Hondo, from his humble beginnings in Mauritania, to smuggling himself on board a ship to France, to finding recognition as a modern African cinema director and actor. Hondo’s films challenged racism in Europe and historic colonialism in Africa. He also found great success dubbing the voices of famous Hollywood actors into French, including Eddie Murphy and Morgan Freeman. French children recognise Hondo as the voice of Donkey in Shrek. But to a generation of cinema-goers, Hondo was a radical filmmaker who used his creativity as a tool to fight injustice, wherever he saw it.

  • An American in My Home | Al Jazeera World

    25/05/2022 Duración: 45min

    Morgan and Perry are two young American students looking to expand their horizons through a college placement programme. They left the United States to spend time living with local families in Morocco. Morgan is in Rabat, hoping to improve her Arabic and learn the local culture. Perry is in a remote mountain village 230km away, staying with a family and their small children. For both of them, this immersion is a rich and lasting experience, in which they learn the language and culture of Morocco. For one, it becomes life-changing when she falls in love.

  • DOCUMENTARY | Songs of the Gulf | Al Jazeera World

    04/05/2022 Duración: 46min

    Racist slurs, satire, an ancient Islamic "advert" and World Cup football pride are the inspirations for these four song stories from the Arabian Gulf. In Kuwait, the Haydoo song was born as an expression of pride in the face of unpleasant slurs in the 1981 World Cup; in Oman, a satirical song about a cat and mouse is really about the political situation in the 1970s; an old Qatari phrase, "shoomelah", meaning "rise to him", became the lyrics of the country’s main football anthem; and in Iraq, an ancient poem about the virtues of black veils became what is considered the oldest "advertisement" in Islamic history. Away from politics and war, this musical mini-tour sheds light and offers insights into a region often poorly represented in the media. Al Jazeera World: - YouTube: - Twitter: - Facebook: - Instagram: - Website:

  • Turkey’s Senkaya Bus | Al Jazeera World

    27/04/2022 Duración: 45min

    The minibus service operates even when temperatures drop to minus 35 degrees Celsius (-31 degrees Fahrenheit). Despite the treacherous roads, regular passengers journey to the nearest town, Senkaya. This trip allows a tight-knit group of friends to banter, bond and discuss their challenging lives. This remote bus service also reveals local environmental change. There has been a reduction in snowfall which used to help keep the soil fertile, but now the frozen-solid ground has become harder to farm, threatening livelihoods here. In Turkey’s Senkaya Bus, we get an insight into communities, cultures and environmental change in eastern Turkey.

  • How a Cairo stray dog embarks on a new life abroad | Documentary | Al Jazeera World

    02/03/2022 Duración: 46min

    Soly, an Egyptian filmmaker, rescues Layaly, a stray dog in Cairo, with help from a group of animal welfare volunteers before travelling with her to a new home abroad. However, just hours before the dog is due to face life-saving throat surgery, she escapes into the hills. Soly joins a 10-day search with support from local media and volunteers. This tale of animal welfare and international rescue concludes in the snows of Canada, where the dog who cheated death embarks on her new life.

  • The Colours of Home: An Arab mural in the US | Al Jazeera World

    16/02/2022 Duración: 46min

    Ahmad Abumraighi is an artist with a dream. He wants to create a striking artwork that connects the suffering of Black Americans, Native Americans and Palestinians. However, the mural is just one part of his dream. He wants to display it in the open air in the very heart of the American capital, Washington, DC. It is an ambitious project so Ahmad sets out on a road trip along the East Coast of the United States, seeking inspiration from other artists.

  • Literary Liaisons: Thinkers and Surrealists | Al Jazeera World

    09/02/2022 Duración: 46min

    Correspondence between writers can sometimes reveal insights into their characters and ideas, beyond their published work. In this film, two cross-cultural stories explore unusual connections through the exchange of letters. The first is a little known link between the great Russian novelist Leo Tolstoy and the Grand Mufti of Egypt. Muhammad Abduh was the country’s spiritual leader and one of the most influential Muslim theologians of the early 20th century. The second story is about the connection between the French surrealist writer André Breton and the Egyptian author, poet and critic Georges Henein. It is a tale of shared artistic vision across continents, but one which eventually led to a falling out between the two men.

  • Palestine 1920: The Other Side of the Palestinian Story | Al Jazeera World

    02/02/2022 Duración: 47min

    “A land without a people, and a people without a land” is how the relationship between Palestine and the Jewish people was described by Christian writers in the 1800s. And the 20th-century history of the Middle East has largely been written through these eyes. But this film from Al Jazeera Arabic looks at Palestine from a different angle. It hears from historians and witness accounts, and features archive documents that show Palestine as a thriving province of Greater Syria and the Ottoman Empire at the dawn of the 20th century. The evidence suggests that its cities had a developing trade and commercial sector, growing infrastructure, and embryonic culture that would enable it to meet the challenges of the decades ahead. However, the political ramifications of the Balfour Declaration, San Remo Conference and British Mandate set in motion a series of events that profoundly affected this vibrant, fledgeling society and led to the events of 1948 and beyond. This film is the other side of the Palestinian stor

  • The Sacred Woods: A coming-of-age ritual in Ivory Coast | Al Jazeera World

    26/01/2022 Duración: 46min

    This award-winning documentary from Ivory Coast follows a group of young men who undergo an ancient coming-of-age ceremony in a remote West African forest. Their spiritual tutor is struggling to preserve the tradition of the Generation Festival at a time when young local men are increasingly indifferent to these ancestral rituals. Thanks to his efforts, ancient custom prevails and many young men in their early twenties take part in a gruelling three-week endurance test of physical and mental prowess.

  • Arabs Abroad: The Activist and the Entrepreneur | Al Jazeera World

    09/12/2021 Duración: 45min

    Millions of people from the Arab world have migrated or taken refuge in other countries over the decades, to escape war and persecution or for economic, educational and family reasons. Arabs Abroad meets those who have built successful lives in countries outside the Middle East, focusing not on their journey but on their destination. This episode meets two women who have overcome great odds to find success in their new lives abroad - one a politician and social activist in Iceland, the other an award-winning Moroccan-Dutch businesswoman who has created a multimillion-dollar business but still finds time to help disadvantaged young people in the Netherlands.

  • Doctor of Hope in Syria, Yemen and Turkey | Al Jazeera World

    01/12/2021 Duración: 46min

    Experienced consultant gynaecologist and obstetrician Dr Zouhair Lahna devotes most of his time to working as a volunteer in general and maternity medicine in places where there is little or no medical care. In this film, he travels to Syria, Yemen and southern Turkey to perform surgeries, deliver babies and pass on his knowledge and expertise to the next generation of doctors, midwives and nurses. Lahna’s voluntary work is inspiring as well as appreciated by everyone he meets, as he delivers a powerful, personal message of humanity and hope wherever he goes.

  • A Palestinian Israeli Crime Wave | Al Jazeera World

    24/11/2021 Duración: 45min

    There is a dark underworld of Palestinian crime syndicates operating within Israel. Al Jazeera Arabic’s Tamer Almisshal examines this rarely reported but growing phenomenon. He meets victims, gangsters and those attempting to keep a lid on a spiralling trend of lawlessness directed at Palestinian citizens of Israel. He asks how the organised crime gangs work, who protects them, where they source their weapons, why murder rates are increasing and, importantly, what the Israeli police are doing to protect the Palestinian citizens of Israel? Some accuse Israeli authorities of turning a blind eye, or worse, colluding with and infiltrating the gangs for political reasons, while Benjamin Netanyahu announced a multimillion-dollar initiative to combat these crimes. But until little has changed and Palestinian victims add this problem to their already challenging lives in Israel.

  • The Story of Al Jazeera: A Unique Path | Al Jazeera World

    03/11/2021 Duración: 50min

    Twenty-five years ago, a new era in television news in the Middle East began when Al Jazeera Arabic started broadcasting from its headquarters in Doha, Qatar. Today, its news, current affairs and documentaries are seen and trusted by millions worldwide. Al Jazeera began broadcasting in Arabic to an audience starved of free and independent news. It shook the Arabic-speaking world, tackling subjects previously thought too controversial or taboo. The channel’s presence on the ground and its regional knowledge gave it an advantage over rival networks, as it produced bold journalism, reporting both sides of the story and often drawing harsh criticism from governments accustomed to a more compliant media. In the past 25 years, Al Jazeera has won many awards for its fearless pursuit of the truth in an increasingly authoritarian world, continuing to hold power to account, while at the same time telling the human story - both on-air and online. This documentary, made to mark the network’s 25th anniversary, tells t

  • Senegal’s Pink Lake | Al Jazeera World

    28/10/2021 Duración: 46min

    The Pink Lake in Senegal attracts tourists and is a vital local resource, but there are certain environmental issues that could threaten its existence. Lake Retba, or Lac Rose, near the capital, Dakar, is the only pink lake in Africa. It is a top tourist attraction and the salt dug from its bed also underpins the local economy on which thousands of people in Senegal and West Africa depend. But it is also right next to the Atlantic Ocean and a strip of constantly moving dunes - so blowing sand can cause siltation and disturb the lake’s ecosystem. Seashell mining also used to disrupt the flow of underground water to the lake and local rainfall has fallen due to climate change. Some local experts are worried that the lake’s salt may be being overexploited. Although action has been taken to protect it – the government has banned seashell mining and the lake is now given an annual biological rest – there is still a risk that if the environmental situation were to deteriorate, the effects could be quite serious.

  • Samaritan Weddings: Signed, Sealed, Delivered | Al Jazeera World

    20/10/2021 Duración: 47min

    The Samaritans are a tiny ethnic-religious community dating back almost 3,000 years – and they are a population in crisis. But perhaps not for long. Marriage agencies in Ukraine have arranged for more than a dozen women to marry into the Samaritan community in Palestine. Many Samaritans live in a mountain village near Nablus in the occupied West Bank and face a worrying numbers problem. There are only 800 surviving Samaritans, where once they were counted in their thousands. Men outnumber women by three to one. Their custom is that a young Samaritan man can only marry a woman from within the community if he has a sister who he can offer as a bride in return. Faced with a fight for survival, a Samaritan religious leader changed the rules to allow Samaritan men to marry women from abroad. While some traditional Samaritans initially resisted the arrival of several Ukrainian brides into this close-knit community, the women are adapting to their new surroundings and providing a population lifeline to this small

  • A Tunisian Family: High hopes, desperate lives | Al Jazeera World

    06/10/2021 Duración: 45min

    Family, feuds and the future: the Tormsi family, struggling to make ends meet, reflects on the lack of opportunities in Tunisia today - and the older children especially weigh up their options. There is little money for the family of six that is heavily dependent on their ageing father and the eldest son. Some hard choices need to be made. The two teenage boys consider whether to complete their education in Tunisia or risk everything by taking an illegal boat trip to Europe. They think they stand a better chance of getting European residency if they land in Europe as minors – but their agonising choice has no certain outcome. The parents balance the reality of trying to feed their family against the aspirations of the younger generation. They want different opportunities, careers, experiences, and modern consumer goods - all of which are unattainable on a brick labourer’s wage in a struggling economy. Like many around them, the Tormsi family have largely given up on Tunisian politics and are disillusioned

  • Gaza: 60-Minute Warning | Al Jazeera World

    29/09/2021 Duración: 46min

    In May 2021, missiles from Israeli jets struck and completely demolished four towers in Gaza – that is a fact. What was not clear was the reason for the attacks. Why were these buildings selected for destruction? Israel claimed the towers were used by Hamas, whose military wing was launching rocket attacks on Israeli towns and cities at the time. Local Palestinians in Gaza, as well as international media and political leaders, disputed this and maintained that the towers housed only businesses, residential apartments and media organisations, including Al Jazeera Media Network and American news agency The Associated Press. This film charts the story of the attacks - from the 60-minute evacuation warning to the question of the cost of rebuilding - and seeks to establish why these towers were singled out, bombed and destroyed.

  • Literary liaisons of iconic North African writers | Al Jazeera World

    22/09/2021 Duración: 45min

    While writing is normally a solitary profession, occasionally literary connections between great authors spark fiery, creative tension and sometimes storytelling brilliance. This film is the tale of two such connections, both in North Africa in the mid-twentieth century. The first is about the French writer, Jean Genet, and the Moroccan novelist, Mohamed Choukri. Both were brought up in dysfunctional circumstances, devoid of life’s advantages, but managed to overcome their troubled early lives. They met in Tangier where both rose to become leading, modern literary figures and lifelong friends. The second tells the compelling story of the conflicting lives of Nobel laureate Albert Camus and author Kateb Yacine, set against the violent backdrop of the Algerian War of Independence.

  • Meteorite Hunters in Morocco | Al Jazeera World

    14/09/2021 Duración: 46min

    Meteorites may be the only truly extra-terrestrial items it is possible to find, buy or own on Earth. Their rarity has created a global trade, fed by a fascination with these dark rocks from outer space. Most meteorites on the market come from Morocco, where the inky-black rocks are easier to spot in the arid mountain landscape. Nomads welcome these "gifts from the sky" and sell them to dealers and researchers. However, the prices obtained by Moroccan nomads in the High Atlas Mountains are a fraction of those in the fashionable rock and crystal shops in Europe.

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