Ahead of “El Clásico’s” first Tribeca screening on April 16, Indiewire has obtained an exclusive clip from Halkawt Mustafa’s new film. The movie — which, for any soccer fans who may be reading, does indeed take its name from the rivalry between Real Madrid and FC Barcelona — follows two brothers of small stature in present-day Iraq who embark on a road trip to see the two titans of fútbol go head to head in Madrid. In that sense the film is kin to Jafar Panahi’s “Offside,” about a little girl in Iran who tries to sneak into a World Cup qualifying match — which she isn’t allowed to attend because of her gender.
In the clip, brothers Alan and Shirwan arrive at a checkpoint on their motorbike and are asked to show their papers to one of many men outfitted with AK-47s and other military gear. It isn’t an entirely tense encounter, however — seeing that one of them is wearing a Messi jersey, he says “Long live Barcelona” and sends them on their way (not that they reveal the true purpose of their trip).
The entire adventure is a bit ill-advised, as Alan is hoping to deliver a pair of handmade Kurdish soccer shoes to Cristiano Ronaldo in order to win the approval of his girlfriend’s father, but the movies have long assured us that the most quixotic journeys are often the most meaningful.