Los Angeles Times

A Lebanese director's new film opens old wounds

BEIRUT - In movie theaters in Lebanon, "The Insult" is preceded by a terse disclaimer: The views in the film do not represent those of the Lebanese government.

Yet that official unease didn't stop the Lebanese ministry of culture from choosing "The Insult" as the country's entry for this year's Academy Awards, and last month it was named one of the five finalists in the foreign language category.

The government's ambivalence speaks to both Lebanon's on-again, off-again love affair with the film's director, Ziad Doueiri, and the difficult relationship many Lebanese still have with the subject matter: the country's long civil war.

The conflict, not unlike the one now raging next door in Syria

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