Capharnaum - The Movie
Nadine Labaki always astonishes me with her work and this is actually my first time ever to write a review about a movie. But this... this is a masterpiece...
Capharnaum managed to stir my emotions, it awakened my mind to things we see on a daily basis but decide to ignore. It was a big slap in the face, to be honest. As I watched, I hated myself for having food and shelter. I hated the fact that I paid 14.000 LBPs for my own pleasure and enjoyment to watch a movie. I hated the fact that I bought a $1 worth of pop corn for $7. Why do I get to enjoy a three-hour movie whilst others need that money for a three-day food supply? For those who still haven't seen it, it's a story of a supposedly 12-year old boy who gets sued for stabbing a "son of a bitch" (as the boy, Zain describes him). It depicts the life of a typical Lebanese poor family, only if the word poor was enough. It portrays how they eat, how they dress, how they talk and behave and what they do for a living. It was so REAL that I thought it was actual footage from Zain's life. The movie also displays the life of an Ethiopian woman who has no permit and who was knocked up by some guy and gave birth to a baby she can barely support. Oh, speaking of the Ethiopian woman; I was meaning to mention, as soon as the movie starts, we see Zain at court and then we also see the Ethiopian, Tegist with tears in her eyes while waiting for Internal Security to call out her name. At this point I'm really curious as of what this is going to be about and some guy behind me makes a "funny" joke about the scene saying "oh, so the Ethiopian is the star of the movie?"... I don't know why but I thought I'd mention that because it left me in shock... we'll get back to that later.
Capharnaum addresses poverty, illiteracy, ignorance, cruelty, racism, unawareness and child abuse. On the other hand, it also addresses kindness, innocence, forgiveness and faith. It is just amazing how Zain worked so damn hard to support Tigest's baby all alone while his parents didn't have a care in the world for their own children. A 12-year old boy taking care of a baby was just so heartwarming and beautiful. Zain's personality is amazingly complex and in him one can touch awareness and illiteracy at the same time. Innocence and violence. Politeness and insensitivity. Good and bad. Love and hate. He had a vision, he had a message. His message was bigger than governments and countries. It was bigger than you and me. It was a message that we decide to laugh about instead of help spread. The message is simplified in one word: AWARENESS.
About the guy I mentioned earlier, lets hope he has learned something from the movie...
Lets make this movie our prayer before going to bed every night... Then, we could try and change the world to the better.
Nadine Labaki keeps on dazzling us with her great work... I can't wait for the next one. We, as Lebanese, are so proud of you. And the whole world should be. Much love.