THE SWIMMERS (Netflix)
This is an incredible true story about two Syrian sisters, Sara and Yusra Mardini, who flee their country to try and reach Germany.
The film takes us back to Sara and Yusra’s life in Damascus before and during the war, establishing their family life, their characters and the intensifying war.
Growing up in a family of swimmers, their father being their coach, the sisters train every day, despite the war getting more and more present. Several of their friends are killed, more people flee, and when the swimming pool is bombed while Yusra is in it, it’s decided that the two girls should leave the country.
With the relationship between the sisters being the thread throughout the film, it’s also the difference between them that makes it glow. They both have incredibly strong willpower and determination, and this will not just lead them the way, but also tear them apart.
From a film perspective, it is in fact a typical Hollywood film, it doesn’t shy the cringe or the crunch, it takes the lead from victim to victory, but because it’s based on a true story, it all feels justifiable and acceptable.
The story depicts the sisters’ journey, but also the horrifying situation nearly 100 million forcibly displaced people around the world are facing on a daily basis, to try and find peace.