Retour a Babylone (2002)


Back to Babylon (Arabic: العودة إلى بابل‎, French: Retour à Babylone) is a documentary film directed by the Iraqi-French film director Abbas Fahdel.


Back in his home town of Babylon after a long exile, the Iraqi-born director Abbas Fahdel asks himself: “What has become of my friends? What has life here made of them? What would life here have made of me had I not decided to follow the course of destiny elsewhere?” In his search and inquiries, his encounters with the friends of his youth, it is the situation today in Iraq that is revealed through the camera’s eye: the ravages of Saddam Hussein’s dictatorship, the after-effects of the Iran-Iraq war, the Gulf War and the embargo imposed by the United Nations.


  • For 14 years Abbas was “missing in action”.
  • The Red Cross visited him during the first year and he could send a letter to his family.
  • After that, they transferred him to another POW camp where he was deprived of everything.

Production & Filming Details

  • Director(s):
    • Abbas Fahdel.
  • Producer(s):
    • Blanche Guichou … producer.
    • Muriel Meynard … assistant producer.
    • Carine Ruszniewski … assistant producer.
  • Writer(s):
    • Abbas Fahdel.
  • Music:
    • Sami Kaftan.
  • Cinematography:
    • Amer Alwan.
    • Abbas Fahdel.
  • Editor(s):
    • Sylvie Gadmer.
  • Production:
    • Agat Films & Cie.
    • Centre national du cinéma et de l’image animée (CNC) (participation).
    • France 5.
    • Société des Producteurs de Cinéma et de Télévision (Procirep) (participation).
  • Distributor(s):
    • Doc & Co (2002) (World-wide) (all media).
  • Release Date: 21 September 2002 (TV Premiere, France).
  • Rating: Unknown.
  • Running Time: 52 minutes.
  • Country: France and Iraq.
  • Language: Arabic.

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