Charismatic cleric Abdul Aziz Ghazi, an ISIS supporter and Taliban ally, is waging jihad against the Pakistani state. His dream is to impose a strict version of Sharia law throughout the country, as a model for the world. A flashpoint in Aziz’s holy war took place in 2007, when the government leveled his flagship mosque to the ground, killing his mother, brother, only son and 150 students. With unprecedented access, Among The Believers follows Aziz on his very personal quest to create an Islamic utopia, during the bloodiest period in Pakistan’s modern history.
The film also follows the lives of two teenage students who have attended madrassahs (Islamic seminaries) run by Aziz’s Red Mosque network. Throughout the film, their paths diverge: one into the fundamentalist, one into the moderate. Aziz's foil in the film is nuclear physicist and leading educational activist Dr. Pervez Hoodbhoy. He passionately opposes Aziz through his public appearances, lectures, and in the media. Opposition to Aziz comes to a head in December 2014, when Aziz insults a grieving nation by trying to justify the brutal massacre of 132 school children in Peshawar by the Taliban. Led by Hoodbhoy and others, Pakistan’s moderate majority focuses on Aziz and calls for his arrest.
This screening will be followed by a Q&A with director Mohammed Naqvi and producer Jonathan Goodman Levitt.
Running time: 1 hour 24 minutes. Please arrive on time as latecomers may not be admitted.
Frontline Club, Paddington
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