Visiting his Lebanese grandmother on the eve of his wedding, documentarian Mahmoud Kaabour composes a charmingly inventive family portrait that's by turns comic and moving. When not puffing on her beloved Arguileh, haggling with vendours passing under her balcony or unleashing a torrent of cutting remarks, Teta Fatima marvels at how Mahmoud not only bears her late husband's name but also his likeness. (It must be said: The resemblance is truly extraordinary.)
As Kaabour's rhapsodic film unfolds, the past becomes increasingly present. Through well-appointed animated flourishes, the director practically brings his grandfather back to life. In turn, when an old recording of Mahmoud Sr.'s violin improvisations is played, we see the arthritic Fatima grow reinvigorated, lithely swaying like a woman decades her junior. It's but one of Grandma's countless moments that make the heart swell until it breaks.