Mayor

Directed by David Osit
Film Movement
2020
89 Minutes
USA, United Kingdom
English, Arabic
Documentary
Not Rated

MAYOR is a real-life political saga following Musa Hadid, the Christian mayor of Ramallah, during his second term in office. His immediate goals: repave the sidewalks, attract more tourism, and plan the city's Christmas celebrations. His ultimate mission: to end the occupation of Palestine. Rich with detailed observation and a surprising amount of humor, MAYOR offers a portrait of dignity amidst the madness and absurdity of endless occupation while posing a question: how do you run a city when you don't have a country?

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Reviews

  • "The best new film about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is a dark comedy about Ramallah’s Mayor... offers a striking new perspective on that struggle, with a personal on-the-ground quality matched by grand tonal ambitions that makes it the best of its subgenre. "
    Eric Kohn, Indiewire
  • "Impressive. Engrossing. MAYOR is a study in politics both micro and macro, showing what happens when the two come fatefully crashing together."
    Jordan Mintzer, The Hollywood Reporter
  • "Astonishing. Gripping and surprisingly witty... Osit brings a respectful approach that admirably never registers as observations of a patronizing Westerner."
    Tomris Laffly, Variety
  • "CRITIC'S PICK. Surprisingly funny. Hadid comes across as a cleareyed, forthright leader. But Mayor also stands out because Osit has thought it through in cinematic terms."
    Ben Kenigsberg, The New York Times
  • "MAYOR is an astounding and enthralling film... filled with a delicate blend of dark humour and unflinching honesty."
    Courtney Small, Cinema Axis
  • "... one of my favorites of the year, hands-down — was David Osit’s hilarious and moving documentary Mayor."
    Alissa Wilkinson, Vox
  • "Subtly electrifying... deeply affecting. A movie full of vitalising, delicate observations."
    Robert Greene, Sight & Sound
  • "Brilliant. Like a lost season of "Veep"... amuses and devastates in equal measure."
    Stephen Saito, Moveable Fest
  • "Offers more absurd moments than Samuel Beckett could have ever worked up."
    Arash Azizi, Universal Cinema
  • "MAYOR is essential viewing about the lines between small and grand acts of resistance."
    B.P. Flanagan, Seventh Row
  • "I loved this film. I loved everything about it from its craft, to its subject to all the thematic threads. I love that this is a film that works on many different levels, that it entertains like a drama and makes you think. This is a magnificent film."
    Steve Kopian, Unseen Films
  • "One of the Top 20 films of 2020. ...thrilling and perceptive. Essential viewing...."
    Eric Kohn, Indiewire
  • "Outstanding...Made with irony, subtlety, and style, “Mayor” is a bittersweet lesson in civic and international politics."
    Peter Keough, The Boston Globe
  • "Far from a message movie, David Osit’s sensitive documentary is a captivating, enlightening, and ultimately terrifying look at how to survive day by day when the fight for liberation can seem everlasting."
    Jordan Raup, The Film Stage
  • "“Mayor” proves a unique, involving and edifying experience."
    Gary Goldstein, The Los Angeles Times
  • "...the film is filled with a surprising amount of good humor.... At times, Mayor almost feels like a very dark version of Parks and Recreation."
    Dan Schindel, Hyperalleric
  • "... a fascinating portrait of what city politics look like under extreme conditions. "
    Chris Barsanti, The Playlist
  • "... the director contrasts sometimes dryly funny day-to-day bureaucratic machinations with extraordinary events to give viewers a weighty sense of the existential. "
    Kevin Ritchie, NOW Toronto
  • "Easily one of the best documentaries of the year, Mayor straddles political commentary, verite reportage, poetry and absurdism with considerable aplomb. "
    Dennis Harvey, 48hills
  • "Mayor proves to be a remarkable achievement. Shown through the eyes of Ramallah's leader, preconceived notions about the region are undone. It's a powerful portrait of a people left in its place."
    Chase Hutchinson, The Stranger
  • "One of the Best Films of 2020"
    Christopher Reed, Hammer to Nail
  • "One of the 25 Best Documentaries of 2020. Osit elegantly assembles a portrait of leadership—confident, caring and above all committed to the people—that feels genuinely alien to the American experience today."
    Dom Sinacola, Paste Magazine