2018 ( Lebanon | France | USA ) ( Drama )
( Arabic with English subtitles )
Starring: Zain Al Rafeea, Yordanos Shiferaw, Boluwatife Treasure Bankole
Director: Nadine Labaki
Capernaum (“Chaos”) tells the story of Zain (Zain al Rafeea), a Lebanese boy who sues his parents for the “crime” of giving him life. It follows him as a gutsy streetwise child as he flees his negligent parents, survives through his wits on the streets, takes care of Ethiopian refugee Rahil (Yordanos Shiferaw) and her baby son, Yonas (Boluwatife Treasure Bankole). He is jailed for a crime, and finally, seeks justice in a courtroom.
Shot over six months, Capernaum is based on years of research and interviews Labaki and her collaborators conducted with refugees and neglected, abandoned, and/or incarcerated minors. It offers an immediacy and authenticity that would not have been possible without its non-professional performers improvising versions of their own experiences.
Capernaum is a breath-taking tale of underdogs on the streets of Beirut. It was given a standing ovation at Cannes and was nominated for an Oscar (Best Foreign Language Film). Although it is set in the depths of a society’s systematic inhumanity, Capernaum is ultimately a hopeful film that stirs the heart as deeply as it cries out for action.