The Cave

Documentary by Feras Fayyad (Last Men in Aleppo) about a team of female doctors who tirelessly treat casualties in an underground hospital in Syria while battling systemic sexism. Nominated for Best Documentary Feature at the Oscars.

Please note that this film is in Arabic and English, with Dutch subtitles.
Time & Tickets

It’s 2016, and great swaths of eastern Ghouta lie in ruins. Millions of people have already fled, but the bombardments by government forces continue. The area is surrounded, so there’s no escape route for the 400,000 inhabitants. One of the few bright spots in an otherwise utterly bleak situation is the improvised underground hospital where the wounded can get treated.

Dr. Amani is the young paediatrician heading the team of doctors and nurses doing the best they can with limited resources. To make matters worse, she’s having to defend herself and her female colleagues against men who believe that women should stick to doing the housework, and that it would be better to have a man at the helm.

While the film does show the effect of the civil war on the population at large, its main focus is on how the hospital staff manages despite the difficult conditions. There’s humour and teasing, but there are also moments of fear, and of despair – are they offering real help, or just a rag to stop the bleeding?

Nominated for the Oscar for best documentary.

Feras Fayyad, Syria, Denemark, Germany, Qatar, 2019, 107 min. Arabic & English spoken, Dutch subtitles.