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Feras Fayyad · Syria/Denmark · 2019 · 107 mins · 14A · Arabic with subtitles
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Winner: TIFF 2019 People’s Choice Documentary 

Filmmaker Feras Fayyad’s riveting documentary plunges viewers into the conflict in Syria, where a heroic team of doctors and nurses try to save as many lives as they can amid a punishing five-year siege. The citizens of Ghouta, a town outside Damascus, live in a decimated landscape of rubble and half-razed buildings. But beneath that hopeless surface, a sprawling warren of underground corridors and treatment rooms form a surprisingly functioning if woefully under-resourced hospital. There, a pediatrician named Amani Ballor oversees a team of medical practitioners treating a near-constant stream of people suffering unimaginable wounds and even deeper emotional trauma. That most of these patients are children gives The Cave its profound sense of pathos, and also outrage: As if the physical and psychic toll aren’t enough, Dr. Amani also must battle the entrenched sexism of Syrian culture. Fayyad films The Cave with a grace and compositional sensitivity. While conveying the cramped, claustrophobic desperation of his subjects, he also makes space for technical beauty, especially in long tracking shots and moments of discretion with his observant but never obtrusive camera.—The Washington Post “The war above is impossible to forget, but Fayyad brings a calmness and grace to the film with smooth tracking shots and carefully composed scenes”.—The Star

“A powerful tale of bravery, compassion and resilience, The Cave is a remarkable film.” Cinema Axis
“A stark reminder of the toll of war, but also of the tenacity of the human spirit.” The Star
Cast Maythavee Burapasing, Ron Smoorenburg, Nirut Sirichanya
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