10th edition CIFF – 10-14 April 2024

Capharnaüm (Capernaum) (2019 Feature Film)

Nadine Labaki | Lebanon | 2018 | color | DCP | 123′ | Arabic | e.s.

Twelve-year-old Zain is growing up without any hopes for the future in a crowded, dilapidated apartment in Beirut. After running away from home following a crisis, he finds shelter with an ‘illegal’ Ethiopian who takes him on to look after her baby. An energetic, poignant portrait of the expanding ‘precariat’ in this Lebanese metropolis

The doctor thinks Zain is about twelve years old, but nobody knows for sure; he wasn’t registered at birth. And this is not the only pretty basic thing missing from the chaotic lives of Zain and his younger brothers and sisters: they also lack a habitable home, sufficient food, protection, love. So Zain takes his parents to court. His complaint: that they brought him into the world.

Using the court case as a framework, we learn how it came to this in two long flashbacks. In an energetic montage of observationally filmed scenes, Capharnaüm examines – in part through the problems of an ‘illegal’ Ethiopian cleaner who shelters Zain when he runs away from home – the fate of the large group of undocumented people trying to survive in and around Beirut. Street-savvy and wise beyond his years, the sad gaze of young lead Zain Al Rafeaa betrays his real-life experiences as a Syrian refugee in the Lebanese metropolis.

Place: The Cinemas 1

Date: 10 April 2019

Time: 19:00

Duration: 1:32

Place: The Cinemas 2

Date: 10 April 2019

Time: 20:30

Duration: 1:32

Place: The Cinemas 1

Date: 11 April 2019

Time: 15:45

Duration: 1:32

Place: The Cinemas 2

Date: 14 April 2019

Time: 21:00

Duration: 1:32

Year in



Nadine Labaki


Christopher Aoun


Zain Al Rafeea
Yordanos Shiferaw
Boluwatife Treasure Bankole
Kawsar Al Haddad
Fadi Yousef
Haita ‘Cedra’ Izzam
Alaa Chouchnieh




Konstantin Bock
Michelle Keserwany






Khaled Mouzanar


Michel Merkt
Khaled Mouzanar

Production Company

Mooz Films

Production Design

Hussein Baydoun


Jihad Hojeily
Michelle Keserwany

Sound Design

Chadi Roukoz

Year of Production


Nadine LABAKI (1974, Libanon) is acteur, scenarioschrijver en regisseur. Ze voltooide haar Audiovisual Studies aan Saint-Joseph University in Beiroet. Labaki groeide op tijdens de burgeroorlog die duurde van 1975 tot 1990. Haar debuutfilm Caramel (2007) ging in première in Cannes en won een aanzienlijk aantal prijzen. In 2018 werd Labaki de eerste vrouwelijke Arabische filmmaker die een grote prijs won in competitie toen Capharnaüm (2018) bekroond werd met de Juryprijs in Cannes.



Caramel (2007), Where Do We Go Now? (2011), Rio, I Love You (2014, segment O Milagre), Capharnaüm/Capernaum (2018)