On the Adamant

Golden Bear
Berlin International Film Festival
Berlinale Documentary Award
Berlin International Film Festival
Best Documentary
Cesar Awards
A moving testament to what people are capable of.


On the Adamant

Winner of the Golden Bear at the Berlin Film Festival, this affecting, enlightening documentary from nonfiction master Nicolas Philibert (To Be and to Have, In the Land of the Deaf) invites viewers to come aboard the Adamant and witness the transformational power of art and community. The Adamant is a one-of-a-kind place: a floating refuge on the Seine River in the heart of Paris that offers day programs for adults with mental illnesses. Its attendees come from across the city and are offered care that grounds them in time and space, helping them achieve recovery and stability. Through a blend of therapy, education, and culture rooted in music and the arts, the Adamant offers a hopeful vision of what a humanistic approach to mental health care could look like. The community on the boat is intentionally created so that both the staff and the people receiving care are treated with the same respect and dignity. Their meetings and conversations reveal the camaraderie and collective humanity of a group of people whose similarities far outweigh their differences.

“Compassionate, intelligent and shrewdly observed… there is a gentle and very happy sense of freedom and possibility aboard the Adamant, and there is enormous warmth, sympathy and human curiosity in this film.” – Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian

“A moving testament to what people are capable of. Not only a depiction of psychiatric treatment administered with plenty of warmth and enthusiasm, but a portrait of several individuals who, despite their noticeable disabilities, are capable of producing original and moving works of art.” – Jordan Mintzer, The Hollywood Reporter

On the Adamant is most moving when it stands back, letting its most disenfranchised subjects talk, or shout, or sing.” - Guy Lodge, Variety
Not Rated
Documentary, French Cinema, Culture Vulture
Nicolas Philibert
Mamadi Barri, Walid Benziane, Sabine Berliere
Winner, Golden Bear, Berlin International Film Festival
Nominee, Berlinale Documentary Award, Berlin International Film Festival
Nominee, Best Documentary, Cesar Awards
Nominee, European Documentary, European Film Awards

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