Capernaum screening at Courtenay Landmark Cinema March 27

Tickets are still available for the Wednesday, March 27 5 p.m. screening of Capernaum at Landmark Cinemas.

Named by two New York Times writers, Manohla Dargis and A.O. Scott, as one of the greatest films of 2018, it received a 15-minute standing ovation following its premiere at the 2018 Cannes Film Festival where it won Jury Prize.

Director Nadine Labaki has crafted some of the most indelible depictions of Lebanese life in contemporary cinema. Her latest film, Capernaum, is her finest yet, a dive into Beirut’s lower depths as viewed through the eyes of an imperilled child.

Zain (Zain Al Rafeea) is only 12, but he’s seen enough of this life to resent his very existence. With numerous children to care for, his parents resort to some inventive scams, such as saturating garments with tramadol, which they then pass along to Zain’s incarcerated brother who reconstitutes the drug and sells it to fellow prisoners. More alarmingly, Zain’s parents have sold his 11-year-old sister’s hand in marriage, which prompts Zain to run away. He befriends an Ethiopian cleaning woman, whose baby he eventually becomes guardian to. But life on the streets offers Zain fewer and fewer places to hide.

Encouraged by a current affairs program seeking to draw attention to child poverty, Zain files a lawsuit against his parents for giving birth to him. The trial provides the frame through which Zain’s story unfolds.

Named for a town on the Sea of Galilee where Jesus was said to have healed the sick, Capernaum reveals a world in which desperation is constant and the innocent appear forsaken. Our best hope lies in kids like Zain, whose spite is easily matched by his resourcefulness, and whose story Labaki relays with toughness, empathy, and bold cinematic vision.

The film is a presentation of the Comox Valley Art Gallery and its winter film series.

The film series, an ongoing fundraiser for CVAG, screens films from the Toronto International Film Festival through TIFF – Film Circuit.

Tickets are $14 for CVAG members and $15 for non-members.

To purchase tickets and passes over the phone, call CVAG at 250-338-6211 or drop by the CVAG shop at 580 Duncan Ave. in downtown Courtenay.

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