Sunday, March 1, 2009

Waltz With Bashir

Rent this movie.
It is an Israeli film - a documentary, about a Israeli man's memories of fighting in the Israeli/Lebanese war and the 1982 massacre of Palestinians in the Sabra and Shatila refugee camps. Though it was Lebanese Christian Phalangist militia that carried out the massacres, the controlling Israeli forces essentially allowed it to happen, and the man in the film cannot remember his role or if he was there. The film takes you through his search for answers about the past, what happened, and how he was involved.

The producers chose to use animation, which is the only reason I was able to even to begin to stomach this film. It allows them to cover extremely difficult material in a very powerful way. It also allows them to portray the dreams and flashbacks of the people being interviewed in a way that regular film would not allow.

It was nominated for an Academy award for best foreign film this year.

Whether or not you are interested in the Arab/Israeli conflict, it is worth it to see, because it brings up enormous questions about war, violence, massacre, responsibility and memory.

I should warn - it is hard to watch, and very, very heavy. However, it is worth it.


Victor said...

It sounds amazing. I don't think it has arrived in South Africa. I am looking out for it.

Elisa Chen said...

In my netflix queue. Not out yet but when it is, I will watch it!