section Documentary Film Competition

Telling Nonie

  • Paz Schwartz
  • IL
  • 2024
  • 50

More than 60 years after the death of her father, at the time a high-ranking Egyptian military official in Gaza, Nonie receives a message from a man named Geizi. He claims to have information about the assassination that cost her father his life... What Nonie doesn't know is that the former Mossad agent was involved in it himself.

In the 1950s, Colonel Mustafa Hafez was head of the Egyptian secret service in Gaza, then still under Egypt's control, and thus jointly responsible for the Palestinian Fedayeen attacks on the border with Israel. In 1956 he was the victim of a targeted bomb attack by the Israeli secret service. His daughter Nonie left Egypt in the 1970s, moved to the USA and converted to Christianity. After the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, she became a public critic of radical Islam and founded the Arabs for Israel movement.

Using archive footage, the film looks at the tensions between Gaza and Israel in the first half of the 1950s. In addition to Nonie, former Mossad agents are invited to have their say, only one of whom expresses regret about the numerous targeted killings he committed. 88-year-old Geizi gets into contact with Nonie and invites her to Israel in order to confess his involvement in the murder of her father. An unusual connection develops between the two.

Text: Dominique Ott-Despoix
English: Peter Rickerby

Supporting Film: Ordinary (Gil Fermon, IL 2022, 22 min)

Following the screenings on 21.6. at Filmkunst 66 and on 23.6. at Moviemento there will be a Q&A with the director Paz Schwartz.


original title Telling Nonie

international title Telling Nonie

german title Telling Nonie

JFBB section Documentary Film Competition

  • director Paz Schwartz

country/countries IL

year 2024

duration 50

Paz Schwartz

BIO A director, journalist, and media professional. Schwartz worked as a director on the investigative journalism program Real Time, considered the flagship program of the Israeli Public Broadcasting Corporation. A reporter for Channel 13 prime time News, she covered a wide array of topics, including southern Israel and the Gaza border. Meanwhile, she created and directed documentary features for YES Documentary Channel, Channel 13, and the Israeli Public Broadcasting Corporation, about the Israeli army, the national security apparatus, and the Arab-Jewish conflict from a personal story perspective.