“I thought by going there and actually taking the time to watch and taking the time to film and taking the time to contemplate the complexity of what is happening, we might have a powerful tool. The film might be a powerful tool to initiate a dialogue between the different communities, to demystify, un-demonize something that is taking place and that people just don’t want to look at. And they don’t keep saying, ‘Ok, we cannot share the country with these people. There is no way we can be in the parliament, etc.’ So we hope the film will contribute to this dialogue.” — Karim B Haroun
Recently, I sat down with Karim Haroun in our office to talk about the making of MYSTIC MASS, his new film documenting the final day of the Ashura ceremony as it is practiced in Nabatiyyeh, Lebanon. Thousands of Shia Muslims convene to commemorate the martyrdom of Imam Hussein for this important religious event. Karim’s film focuses on the dynamics of the mass from its formation to its dissolution, sensitively portraying the community’s highly coordinated and heartfelt experience.
– Alice Apley, DER Executive Director