Dutch documentary film festival IDFA has announced that the award for Best Film in the Envision Competition has been won by Karim Kassem for Octopus (Lebanon-Qatar-US) which had its world premiere in the competition. The award also includes a €15,000 prize.
The jury statement read: “This film develops its own imagistic language: a language of mystery and loss in the aftermath of a tragedy. It was made with great respect toward the subject matter and it felt like a story told from the inside. There are no answers presented, just the questions of life in the face of a disaster.”
The jury members for the Envision Competition were Andrea Arnold, Joe Bini, Charlotte Serrand, and Akram Zaatari.
Octopus explores the aftermath of the Beirut explosion. The city is under construction and there is a strange eerie nature to how life continues even in its simplest forms. The filmmaker, himself a survivor, finds himself drawn to experience and silently narrates what reality felt like to other survivors through a metaphysical lens.