Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.
Germany/Italy/Israel/France, 2007. Agat Films & Cie, Agav Films, Agav Hafakot, Arte France Cinema, Canal+, Coca Color, Eurimages Council of Europe, Pandora Filmproduktion, R&C Produzioni. Screenplay by Amos Gitai, Marie-Jose Sanselme. Cinematography by Christian Berger. Produced by Laurent Truchot. Music by Simon Stockhausen. Production Design by Emmanuel de Chauvigny, Tim Pannen, Eli Zioni. Costume Design by Moira Douguet. Film Editing by Isabelle Ingold.
A half-French, half-Israeli police officer (Liron Levo) travels to France to bury his father, where he reconnects with his half-sister (Juliette Binoche) and brings her back to Israel with him. Their father’s will instructed that she voyage there to fulfill a wish that involves something she hasn’t dealt with in a very, very long time; how inconvenient that she should be travelling to Gaza at precisely the moment when its residents are being evacuated by the military. All at once this woman, who doesn’t seem overly stable to begin with, is dealing with her family’s closet skeletons and one of the most volatile political situations in the world in this moody, somber and utterly fascinating film by Amos Gitai. It brilliantly slides from scene to scene, never going out of its way to explain itself but never leaving the audience in the dark either. Various tones are perfectly orchestrated by exceptional direction, while the intelligent script (which sometimes misses with some arch dialogue) captures both the personal and political situations without undercooking one or the other. Binoche is astounding, and gets able support from Levo as her brother as well as a cameo by the magnificent Jeanne Moreau.
Toronto International Film Festival: 2007