What I've Been Watching: The Catch-All Film Thread
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March 8th, 2009, 16:47
Waltz with Bashir
by Ari Folman. It's about his and his comrades-in-arms' experiences and memories of the 1982 Lebanon invasion and the Sabra and Shatila massacres. Banned in Lebanon, not surprisingly — it's not at all kind on the Phalangists, who are very much a player there.
I can't say I enjoyed it much. Films by Israelis about how Israelis feel terribly bad about killing all those Arabs (or, in this case, how terrible they feel about Arabs killing other Arabs while they're watching), with some second-degree Holocaust trauma mixed in, just start to feel really terribly old after a while. As with most of the ones I've seen, this one had the same sense of emotional distance — as if everything's seen through the observation slit of a Merkava tank, or a TV; with an unbridgeable distance between them and the Arab "other."
The director clearly had good intentions, but the film still made me want to slap him one. As if he's trolling for sympathy for feeling so bad about shooting those light rockets over the camps as the Phalangists were doing Arik's dirty work. Give me
any day of the week.
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