Israeli Cinema: Articles


'Operation Thunderbolt': Pedestrian Real-Life-Inspired Terrorism Drama

Operation Thunderbolt with Klaus Kinski and Sybil Danning Despite the complex and gripping real-life basis for Mivtsa Yonatan / Operation Thunderbolt – the 1976 hijacking of a Tel Aviv-Athens-Paris Air France flight – director-co-producer-co-scenarist Menahem Golan managed to make a film utterly devoid of suspense, depth, or intelligence. With its […]


'Eyes Wide Open': Gay Love Story in Israeli Orthodox Community

Feb. 8 update: Distributed by New American Vision, Eyes Wide Open will stay one more week at New York City's Cinema Village. Directed by Haim Tabakman and written by Merav Doster, the forbidden gay love story set among Israel's ultra-orthodox Jewish community – where homosexuality isn't exactly welcome – stars […]


'Lemon Tree': Palestinian Widow Fights Israeli Army - Q&A with Director Eran Riklis

Based on actual events, Eran Riklis' Lemon Tree (no connection to Sandy Tolan's novel The Lemon Tree), which opens today in the Los Angeles area, chronicles a Palestinian widow's fight to prevent the Israeli army from razing her lemon grove. The problem is that all those lemon trees are located […]


Ed Catmull Creativity Honored + NSFC Awards' First Ever Animated & Non-Fiction Best Film

Ed Catmull. Pixar co-founder and “collective creativity” proponent Ed Catmull will be the recipient of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' 2009 Gordon E. Sawyer Award, handed to “an individual in the motion picture industry whose technological contributions have brought credit to the industry.” Past honorees – all […]


'Jellyfish': Q&A with Director Etgar Keret

I caught Jellyfish (Meduzot in Hebrew), which opens in New York tomorrow and in Los Angeles on April 25, at the 2007 AFI FEST. What I liked best about this quirky look at several Tel Aviv denizens was the humorous, naturalistic touch of husband-and-wife team of writers-turned-filmmakers Etgar Keret and […]


Tokyo & Rome Film Festival Awards + Golden Horse Winners & Israel Oscar Entry Disqualified

Eran Kolirin at the Tokyo Film Festival. 2007 Tokyo Film Festival Awards 2007 Tokyo Film Festival: October 20–28. Eran Kolirin's The Band's Visit, about an Egyptian police band stranded in a small Israeli town, was the top winner at the 2007 edition of the Tokyo Film Festival. The Band's Visit […]


Costa-Gavras Getting Eisenstein Honor + 'The Band's Visit' Tops Israeli Academy Awards

Screenwriter, director, and producer Costa-Gavras, 74, never one to shy away from inflammatory themes, will be honored with the second-ever Eisenstein Award handed out by the University of Southern California's School of Cinematic Arts. The Sept. 28 ceremony will launch a two-day Costa-Gavras mini-festival, with screenings of four of the […]


Seoul Film Festival & Israeli Film Academy Winners + London Festival Movies

The 2006 Seoul Film Festival came to a close this past Sunday, Sept. 17. The Best Film winner in the International Competition section was Sebastián Camposs dramatic comedy La Sagrada familia / The Sacred Family, the story of a dysfunctional Chilean family whose routine is turned upside down when the sons rebellious and highly […]


'Yossi & Jagger': Subversive Gays in Military Romantic Drama

  Yossi & Jagger (2002) Dir.: Eytan Fox Scr.: Avner Bernheimer Cast: Ohad Knoller, Yehuda Levi, Assi Cohen, Aya Steinovitz, Hani Furstenberg, Sharon Raginiano, Yuval Semo, Yaniv Moyal, Hanan Savyon     Yossi & Jagger is a tragic love story set in a most unlikely place: an Israeli army camp. […]


'Next Door' Movie: Where Alfred Hitchcock Never Dared to Tread

'Next Door' movie with Kristoffer Joner and Julia Schacht. 'Next Door' movie: Going where Alfred Hitchcock feared to tread Screened at Los Angeles' AFI FEST 2005, the Norwegian psychological horror-thriller Next Door / Naboer offers a portrayal of a desperate man (Kristoffer Joner) who finds himself in some very strange […]


'Walk on Water' Movie Review: Lior Ashkenazi Excellent in 'Gay' Mossad Thriller

'Walk on Water' movie with Lior Ashkenazi and Knut Berger. 'Walk on Water' movie: Lior Ashkenazi excellent as guilt-ridden Mossad agent A more ambitious and more proficient effort by Yossi & Jagger director Eytan Fox, Walk on Water is a dramatically flawed but gripping tale of revenge, guilt, and, as […]