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Winner of the Un Certain Regard Freedom Prize

at the Cannes Film Festival 2023





Across the divides of rich and poor, Muslim and Christian, north and south,

light-skinned and dark, Mona and Julia become friends.


A film by Mohamed Kordofani


Dir. Mohamed Kordofani | 2023 | Sudan | 120 mins | Rated M


Freedom Prize, Un Certain Regard, Cannes Film Festival

Audience Award, Paysages de Cinéastes

Youth Jury Award, Paysages de Cinéastes

Women's Jury Award, Paysages de Cinéastes

Roger Ebert Award, Chicago International Film Festival

Audience Award, Singapore International Film Festival

Humanity Prize, El Gouna Film Festival

Audience Award, Leeds International Film Festival

Best African Film, Septimius Awards

Press Jury Award, War on Screen Film Festival

Audience Award, War on Screen Film Festival

Best Film, Belfast Film Festival

Best Director in a Debut Feature Film, Cyprus International Film Festival

Best Leading Actress Award, Cyprus International Film Festival

Best Actress Award, Muslim International Film Festival

Excellence Award, Muslim International Film Festival

Audience Award, Mostra de Cinema Arab


Official Selection

Adelaide Film Festival 2023

Brisbane International Film Festival 2023

Melbourne International Film Festival 2023

Border Mail Film Festival 2023

Darwin International Film Festival 2023


Just before the secession of South Sudan, a married former singer, Mona from the north, seeks redemption for causing the death of a southern man by hiring his oblivious wife, Julia as her maid. The two women forge an unusual relationship across devastating divides in this engrossing Sudanese drama.

Wracked by guilt after covering up the murder, Mona tries to make amends. Unable to confess her transgressions to Julia, Mona decides to leave the past behind and adjust to a new status quo, unaware that the country’s turmoil may find its way into her home and put her face to face with her sins.


A prizewinner in Cannes' Un Certain Regard section, Mohamed Kordofani's well-performed deep cut into Sudan's recent history unfolds like a morality thriller. Telling the story of a fraught friendship between two very different women, Kordofani’s intelligent, compassionate scripting ensures that the political never overwhelms the personal. Yet it also illuminates just how well the fault lines that divide a nation can map onto the rifts within a human heart divided against itself.

-Variety Magazine-

Manages to strike a perfect balance between an intelligent political and cultural backdrop and a thrilling and highly intimate plot.


A gut-wrenching and emotionally rewarding tale of religious persecution compounded by entrenched racism... With the help of an excellent cast, Kordofani proves that it is possible to bear witness to history in a place rarely depicted on screen while framing repercussions as an ever-evolving game of high-stakes emotional chess.

-Screen Daily-

Kordofani’s fine direction balances the film’s multiple modes: It’s a drama, with shades of a thriller and a sense of its own politics.

-Hollywood Reporter-

GOODBYE JULIA - in NZ cinemas March 14

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