• Karim Kassem
  • Lebanon, Qatar, United States
  • 2021
  • 64 min
  • World Premiere
  • Envision Competition

Traffic rushes by as if nothing has happened. But beside the road, the rubble is smoldering, and firefighting helicopters are circling overhead. Tightly framed shots show residents staring silently in houses with shattered windows. Shots of empty streets, with crumbling walls and cars dented by the shockwave, form an elegy accompanied by an ambient score. The city is under construction and there is a strange eerie nature to how life continues even in its simplest forms.

Octopus surfaced during trauma, in the aftermath of the cataclysmic Port of Beirut explosion. The film silently navigates that unfolding, giving space to the myriad of existential questions birthed by the enormity of the happening. Questions of unexamined worldviews, of suffering and meaning, of collective purpose, and of many other quiet thoughts strewn amidst the rubble. What are we saying when we say nothing at all?


  • 64 min
  • color
  • DCP
  • Spoken languages: Arabic
  • Subtitles in: English
Karim Kassem
Karim Kassem, Moustafa Kassem
Executive producer
Johan Matton for Changing Film Productions, Linnea Larsdotter, Elizabeth Potter for Potter Productions
Karim Kassem
Alex Bakri

IDFA history

World Premiere
Envision Competition

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IDFA history

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