The White Helmets (2016) Movie Script

I am married,
and I have a daughter.
Her name is Amal.
Kiss me, kiss me.
Don't give Mom a hard time. Okay?
My family is very important to me.
I'm always worrying about them.
I have a strong belief in my work
for the White Helmets.
And every time I'm on a rescue mission,
I think about them.
Abu Omar!
Abu Omar!
Hello. Where is your dad?
Where is Abu Omar?
- He's ready.
- Is he ready?
Okay, tell him to come down
and we'll go to the center.
The morale of the White Helmets
is always high.
We are always ready
to respond to incidents.
But we just hope that the bombing
and air strikes stop.
Mom, where are you?
Do you need anything?
We have to admit that the situation
in Syria is going from bad to worse.
There is no solution on the horizon.
The situation is sad.
Syria is sad.
Before joining the White Helmets,
I was with an armed group.
I fought for the opposition
for three months.
But I saw that the regime's campaign
was targeting civilians.
And I thought, "It is better to do
humanitarian work than to be armed.
Better to rescue a soul
than to take one."
It's the Russians.
Come on, guys, quickly!
Go! Go!
Make a turn and come back!
We, the White Helmets, are the first
to arrive when there is bombing.
If you don't have some courage,
you wouldn't continue doing what we do.
Go here!
Any human being, no matter who they are
or which side they're on,
if they need our help...
it's our duty to save them.
Does anybody need rescuing?
There's nothing. Right?
Abu Feras lives there, but I don't know
whether he was in or out.
- Here?
- He's got an iron door.
We can't get a sense
if he's in or not.
Can we get in via your balcony?
Whenever I'm on a rescue,
I try as hard as possible
to save every person under the rubble,
whether they are young or old.
I consider them all
to be my family.
He usually goes out during the day
and comes back at night.
There's nothing more
upstairs, right?
There's nothing,
but just check on Abu Mahmoud.
Abu Mahmoud!
- There's no one here.
- Thank God.
Brother, ask people about him
and keep an eye out for him.
Don't forget about him.
Whatever you need,
we're the White Helmets.
There are a number of injuries
and possibly two people killed.
There is nothing more.
We're heading back to the center.
I have been with the White Helmets
for three years.
I've seen many people
who have died in bombings.
I've also seen many people
who were rescued alive.
Abu Waleed, give me a crowbar.
I want to look under the mattress.
But the hardest thing
is seeing dead bodies.
This affects me a lot.
Guys, don't come closer.
Get me a corpse bag.
But this is my duty and my job.
I have to do it for the people,
for the civilians.
Only her relatives, please.
People who are not doing anything,
please leave.
Her hand is stuck.
They've struck!
Get down!
On the ground!
The situation is very difficult
in Syria right now.
Especially with Russia's intervention
to support the regime.
They say that they are fighting ISIS,
but they are targeting civilians.
The casualties are rising daily.
The bloodbath is not stopping.
I've lost two colleagues
very dear and precious to my heart.
They were taking part
in a rescue of civilians.
A week before, we had all been together,
working, eating and drinking...
and then they were dead.
Many of my colleagues
have been killed.
In Aleppo city alone,
we've lost 30...
Thirty White Helmets.
Please, Dad, don't leave me.
All lives are precious and valuable.
A child, even if he is not my son,
is like my son.
I cannot explain it.
As an example, I'll tell you a story
that happened to us in Aleppo.
Two barrel bombs
were dropped in the Al-Ansari area.
The first one left
a number of people wounded,
but the second barrel bomb
killed a lot of people.
We went into the area.
It was like a small village
made of ten houses,
and all the buildings
had been leveled to the ground.
On that day,
our work was very hard
and we worked for about 16 hours.
I thought that I was searching
under the rubble
for a baby that had died.
But all glory is to God.
We were not meant to leave the area
without hearing a sound.
When I heard the sound of a baby...
my feeling was indescribable.
This gave us renewed strength
to continue to work.
It gave us hope
that some people were still alive.
After 16 hours under the rubble,
a baby less than a month old,
still alive...
under the dust...
under the ceilings
that had fallen on him...
We called him the "miracle baby."
The baby was one week old
and at that time my son,
Abdul Hameed,
was almost two weeks old.
I don't know how it came to my mind,
but I imagined that this was my son.
And I started to cry.
I couldn't hold it in,
and all my colleagues started to cry.
The hope is that you guys will convey
the information you're learning
to other White Helmets in Syria.
We are under a lot of pressure right now
to train as many people as we can.
God willing.
Today, we will review listening devices
for locating people
trapped under the rubble.
Can anybody hear me?
Don't move.
If you can't hear anything,
move the position of the sensor.
It's a hard feeling,
that you are away from your family...
but life requires sacrifice.
So now we are sacrificing a whole month
to gain expertise.
This training course means
that we'll gain a lot of experience.
Our job depends on speed
and accuracy
to be able to save lives
and extract victims
from under the rubble.
Is anybody here from Hayyan?
Two White Helmets
were killed from there.
Guys, Marwan
and Ahmad Daboul were killed.
And their brother is injured.
The three are all White Helmets
from Hayyan.
- Today?
- Yesterday.
All White Helmets are targeted.
We're all targets.
We were training on the ropes
when they sent us the news.
Read the opening chapter
of the Qu'ran for their souls.
May God accept them.
Everyone knows the truth about Syria,
but no one's been able to stop
the killing and fighting...
or stop the bloodshed and the massacres
that are being committed.
Early reports suggest
15 people have been killed so far.
Is the area populated?
A wedding hall was completely destroyed
and five or six buildings.
Abu Omar wants to talk to you
to check on his brother and son.
They work in that area.
I can't get hold of my brother or my son.
I'm sorry to be bothering you,
but please can you go and check on them
and then update me?
Just go to my brother's, okay?
And he will find my son.
This must be the strongest car bomb
to ever hit Aleppo.
I didn't know who was speaking.
Listen to it.
My son.
This is my son.
In my whole life, I've never seen
so much destruction.
This is my son.
Yeah, thank God.
But, brother,
what's really the difference
between my son
and another person's?
Aren't they all innocent?
What's their sin, whoever it is?
ISIS on the ground
and the Russian planes above.
Six buildings...
I feel cold.
There is no war here.
No devastation.
No destruction.
Just by crossing a border,
it's so strange
how the situation can change.
If this was in Syria,
it would have been dropping
cluster bombs from that height.
We see so many cluster bombs.
It would not drop barrel bombs,
because they want to cause more harm.
There is a sound...
We can now differentiate between the sound
of military and civilian aircraft.
Take shelter, hero!
Where would I take shelter
in this building?
If a barrel bomb fell here,
it would destroy the whole building!
My son is almost two years old.
He knows all about the war planes.
When planes fly over
and there's an air strike...
my son jumps up on my lap and says,
"Daddy, a bomb."
Now you will learn
how you can give
a practical lesson to the trainees
about putting out fires.
What is the most important thing?
The suffering of civilians
has entered a new chapter
with Russia's air campaign.
There are record levels of shelling,
especially over Aleppo.
I am telling you,
about 200 air raids a day,
and the new rockets
are not like the old ones.
Two hundred air raids a day?
And every rocket
is ruining a full neighborhood.
"You, White Helmets, you are heroes.
May God protect you."
I am really worried,
but I trust in God to protect my family
and my colleagues.
His brother is under the rubble,
but his condition is not known yet.
Three people
are still under the rubble.
Him and two of his colleagues.
They were able to pull one out.
There were four
in the hospital laboratory.
They got one out,
but three are left.
They just sent an announcement
with their names.
I want him to cry.
It's better.
I was in a situation similar to Abu Zaid.
My brother was killed
five months ago.
I had a training course
like this one in Istanbul.
I went there and arrived in the morning.
You know, it's a long way.
I slept a few hours.
When I awoke, I asked my friend
to open the Internet for me,
as I didn't know how.
I had my brother's phone at the time.
I got online
and saw my brother's photo. Dead.
It was the first photo I had looked at.
What's next, Ibrahim?
We've stopped.
Done for the day.
We're not able to do any work.
- Emotionally, we can't.
- Yes, right.
We've just got two women out, alive.
Do you understand me?
And we got out Allaa Al-Halak
and another one with him, dead.
Are you just listening
or are you speaking with him?
You talk with him, Abu Bashir.
Oh, Hamid.
Can you hear me?
I'm Abu Bashir.
Tell us the news.
Has Abu Karmu been killed
or have you pulled him out alive?
Just tell us.
His brother is confused
and does not know what to do.
Abu Bashir, just be patient
for 30 minutes more,
and then call me back.
I just spoke with the guys
to find out if people are still alive.
Listen to me.
There were two killed.
He understood from you
that he is dead.
Your brother is our brother.
God bless him.
So you still haven't got him out?
Nothing is clear yet.
Thanks, brother,
and please do your best.
I know we don't need to tell you,
but you are real heroes.
Today, they hit all the hospitals...
in Aleppo and in Idlib.
Now their targets are the hospitals.
Are these today's victims
from the hospital?
Updated nine minutes ago.
His name is among them.
Tomorrow will be better.
We are always optimistic
that what's to come is better.
Justice will prevail one day.
Without hope, what good is life?
People will die without hope.
It's a feeling of happiness.
True happiness, you have to
experience it to understand.
An indescribable happiness.
A baby that I haven't seen
for a year and a half.
His is a very precious life.
Do you know the feeling that you get
when you plant a small seed
and it grows into a beautiful bush?
That's how we feel
that this baby is still alive
thanks to God and to our work.
We feel very proud.
Thank God he's alive and doing well.
I've learned many lessons
from baby Mahmoud.
Patience, persistence, hard work...
and never to lose hope.
If a person is destined to live,
no matter what happens,
they will live.
I have a lot of hopes
for my own daughter.
I have a lot of dreams
for her, actually.
When I come back from work
and I pick her up...
I look at her and I'm very sad
about the fate of children
who lost their lives during the shelling.
But, at the same time,
I wish for her to fulfill her dreams...
and grow up to be
many, many years old.
Every morning, I wake up
and do this work because it's my duty,
my humanitarian duty.
I will never quit
as long as I'm still alive.
I'm willing to sacrifice my soul
for the sake of the people.
This job is sacred.
I am just trying to do something
for the people
and for my country.
In the White Helmets,
we have a motto...
"To save a life
is to save all of humanity."