Under the golden sun of Beirut, men stand on rooftops and shoot oranges at the sky. They do this to scare their pigeons, make them fly further, and make them stronger. They play the game Kash Hamam, where you have to lure the other players’ pigeons into your own pigeon loft. If you succeed, there’s Kash. And then you cut the feathers off the pigeon. Or feed it to the cats.
Lea Najjar’s cinematic debut is a vital portrait of her hometown Beirut. A city hit by a corrupt elite, popular protests and one of the biggest explosions of the 21st century. But also a city where its hard-pressed citizens come together and form communities despite the chaos. On the flat rooftops high above the labyrinthine streets, we meet three men who have bonded over their love of pigeons – and a girl who dreams of entering the masculine game, Kash Hamam. A vivid, impressionistic snapshot from an already eminent director.

Category Documentary
Original title Kash Kash – Without Feathers We Can’t Live
Director Lea Najjar
Production FFL Film- und Fernseh-Labor Ludwigsburg GmbH & Co. KG
Country Germany, Lebanon, Qatar
Format HD, DCP
Runtime 90 / 59 min
Year 2022
Broadcaster SWR
Language Arabic
Subtitles English
Genre Economy, Geopolitics, Human Interest, Politics, Society


  • "NEXT:WAVE Award", CPH:DOX, Denmark (2022)
  • Dok.fest Munich, Germany (2022)
  • "Most Original Documentary", Millennium Festival Brussels, Belgium (2022)
  • Ethnocineca - Ethnographic And Documentary Filmfest (Opening Film) Austria (2022)
  • Karlsruher Dokumentarfestival dokKa, Germany (2022)
  • Durban International Film Festival, South Africa (2022)
  • Dokufest, View From the World Kosovo August (2022)
  • Apricot Tree Ujan International Documentary Film Festival, Competition, Armenia (2022)
  • Filmfestival Kitzbühel, Austria (2022)
  • International Documentary and Short Film Festival of Kerala, International Section, India (2022)
  • BlackStar Film Festival, USA (2022)
  • German Film Week, Lebanon (2022)
  • "Winner First Steps Award - Documentary", Germany (2022)
  • Ajyal Film Festival, Quatar (2022)
  • MOVE IT! Filmfestival für Menschenrechte, Germany (2022)
  • DOC NYC, USA (2022)
  • Cork International Film Festival, Cinematic Documentary Award competition, Ireland (2022)
  • "Best Documentary", EnergaCAMERIMAGE, Documentary Features Competition, Poland (2022)
  • "First Film Award & ASBU Special Mention & Broadcasting Award 2M (Morocco)", Le PriMed, Festival de la Méditerranée en images, France (2022)
  • Filmschau Baden-Württemberg, Competitoon Best Docunentary Germany (2022)
  • MiradasDoc, Guía de Isora International Documentary Film Festival Spain (2023)
  • Göteborg Film Festival, Voyage section, Sweden (2023)
  • Berlin International Film Festival, Perspektive Deutsches Kino, Germany (2023)
  • Salem Film Fest, USA (2023)
  • Human Rights and Arts Film Festival (HRAFF), Australia (2023)
  • DOC-CÉVENNES, Festival International de Lasalle, France (2023)
  • Shanghai International Film Festival, SIFF Documentaries, China (2023)
  • Winner German Documentary Award 2023
  • Europe on Screen, Indonesia (2023)
  • Twin Cities Arab Film Festival, USA (2023)
  • Grand bivouac - Albertville International Documentary Film and Book Festival, France (2023)
  • Ulsan Ulju Mountain Film Festival (UMFF), Asian Competition, South Korea (2023)
  • Glimmerglass Film Days, USA (2023)
  • Poitiers Film Festival, France (2023)

Quotes & Other

  • Jury Statement CHP:DOX, NEXT:WAVE Award:
    “From a tiny anecdote this film expands its cinematic universe and unveils the disillusionment of an entire city – an entire country. From the opening scene’s claustrophobic setting, to the final wide eye of an artificial pigeon, witnessing the place it took flight from. We, the jury, wish to give this year’s Next:Wave Award to a piece of delicate yet vigorous cinema: ‘Kash Kash – Without Feathers We Can’t Live’”
  • Jury statement Germany Documentary Award:
    "In this masterfully crafted film, filmmaker Lea Najjar and her editor Tobias Wilhelmer tell of the struggle for survival in times of political upheaval, of laughter and the longing for freedom in a sinking world."
  • Interview with director Lea Najjar by Geoffrey Macnab, Business Doc Euope
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