By Oualid Mouaness
During the 1982 invasion of Lebanon at a private school on the outskirts of Beirut, 11-year-old Wissam tries to tell a classmate about his crush on her, while his teachers on different sides of the political divide, try to mask their fears and they also attempt to hide the fractures in their relationship, as they fall on different sides of the political divide.
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Best feature film, Ajyal Youth Film Festival (Doha, Qatar, 2019)
Best film, Asian World Film Festival Los Angeles (2019)
Best children’s picture, Hainan International Film Festival (China, 2019)
Youth audience award: Montpellier International Festival of Mediterranean Film (France, 2019)
Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema award, Toronto International Film Festival (2019)
International critics prize, El Gouna Film Festival (Egypt, 2019)
International French Film Festival in Namur (Belgium, 2020)
Rome Film Festival (2019)
Palm Springs International Film Festival (2020)
Stunning directorial debut.
— Film Inquiry
Based on the director’s boyhood memories of the Israeli invasion of Lebanon, 1982 excels in visual acumen and narrative balance. (…)
Mouaness’ feature-length debut as a filmmaker is audacious and admirable; it’s very well made, impressively staged and shot with an artistic eye for the smallest of details. (…)
Distinct and powerful filmmaking.
— The Playlist
1982, a sensitive slice-of-life drama set in Lebanon before the breakout of war. This charming movie has such a wonderful ensemble cast with characters that feel like they each have their own backstory that it’s easy to get swept up in the tension even before the bomber planes make their appearance.
— Roger Ebert.com
A touching tale of first love and resilience of the human spirit.
— Cultured Vultures.
The great strength of 1982 is its portrayal of an imaginary line of demarcation between two worlds (the adult world and that of children): a boundary which separates those who know the truth from those blissfully unaware of the gravity of the situation; a line drawn by adults in an attempt to protect the young. On the one hand, representing the world of children, we have Wissam, while the spokesperson for the adult universe is Wissam’s teacher, remarkably embodied by the Lebanese filmmaker and actress Nadine Labaki (Capernaum, Where Do We Go Now?, Caramel.) (…)
1982 is a hymn to the innocence of childhood, defending the unexpected manner in which the latter manifests itself during one of the most horrendous moments in Lebanon’s history. (…)
A stirring tribute to innocence.