Thabh Ul Azim | Noble Sacrifice

(Experimental Documentary, 40’)

Noble Sacrifice explores the Shiite ritual of Ashura, as practiced in South Lebanon, and its politicization. Shiite Cleric Sheikh Shafiq Jerade narrates the history of the annual commemoration, and reviews the significance of Ashura within the context of contemporary political realities of the Middle East. He challenges audiences to view current events through the perspective of Lebanese Shiites by offering his own rationale of Ashura’s significance in daily life and its implications on regional and sectarian politics.

Arabic with English subtitles


Select Festivals and Screenings

Images Festival – Toronto (Canada, 2004)
Available Light Screenings Collective – Ottawa (Canada, 2004)
Full Frame Documentary Film Festival – Durham, NC (United States, 2004)
Filmpool Cooperative (Canada, 2004)
Beirut Cinema Days (Lebanon, 2004)
ARPA International Film Festival Los Angeles (United States, 2003)
Anthology Film Archives – New Filmmakers (United States, 2003)
Chicago Underground Film Festival (United States, 2003)
New York Underground Film Festival at the Anthology Film Archives (United States, 2003)
Göteborg Film Festival (Sweden, 2003)
International Documentary Filmfestival Amsterdam – IDFA (Netherlands, 2002)
Kasseler Dokumetarfilm und Videofest – Filmladen Kassel (Germany, 2002)
Raindance Film Festival (United Kingdom, 2002)
Pennsylvania Film Festival (United States, 2002) - John Grierson Prize


Written, directed and produced by
Vatche Boulghourjian

Cinematography and editing by
Vatche Boulghourjian

Additional camera
Christina Forch

Narration, voice and writing, by
Sheikh Shafiq Jerade

Music by
Cynthia Zaven

Filming locations
Nabatiyeh and Beirut, Lebanon

© 2002