Feminists In Focus

Film News and Reviews

Feminists In Focus

November 16, 2010 by

Feminists in Focus: David Grossman on Film

Krauss There has been a lot of attention given recently to David Grossman’s newest work of fiction, To the End of the Land, in which the novelist presents a tremendously human drama about the burdens of living in a society at war. And, as we know, Grossman himself paid a most bitter price, having lost his son in the Second Lebanon War of summer 2006.

But two of Grossman’s previous novels, not focused on issues of war, have recently been adapted into feature films: Someone to Run With and The Book of Intimate Grammar. Although very different from each other, both of these are stories of the challenges of growing up, and both deal heavily with issues of gender in our society. In both stories, the young people are presented with a world that needs changing – in one story the young heroes stand up to the challenge; in the other, the hero succumbs.  (more…)

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Feminists In Focus

November 1, 2010 by

Feminists in Focus: A Peaceful Middle East

Welcome to the latest installment of “Feminists in Focus: Film News and Reviews,” an incisive look at the new film, Budrus, from filmmaker and Lilith contributor Elizabeth Mandel. Enjoy!

KraussThe media is replete with violent images of Palestinians, Israelis and Muslims; of veiled Muslim women subjected to the will of the men in their lives; of a sense of hopelessness regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The recent documentary film “Budrus,” directed by Julia Bacha, offers an alternative version to this story, and through that, hope for an alternative vision for the future. The film chronicles the events that unfolded in Budrus, a tiny (pop. 1500) Palestinian village on the West Bank, as the residents came together in nonviolent resistance against Israel’s separation barrier cutting through the village, its cemetery and its life-sustaining olive groves.

Krauss In 2004, the construction of the barrier came to Budrus. It was scheduled to cut through the town, ostensibly unavoidably, for security reasons (no concrete reason is given for why the barrier takes a circuitous path that cuts through and isolates villages from their land and each other). In response, Ayed Morrar, a lifelong activist and six-year-veteran of Israeli prison, organizes “the Popular Committee Against the Wall,” a non-violent resistance movement designed to stop the progress of the barrier. At first it seems the protests are almost benignly endured by the Israeli military police assigned to Budrus. There is internal disagreement about whether the bulldozers should stop or continue. But soon, olive trees are being dug up, and it seems inevitable the protestors will be stopped and the barrier erected. (more…)

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Feminists In Focus

October 27, 2010 by

Feminists in Focus: The Launch of Lilith’s Film Blog!

KraussWe are so excited to announce the launch of something new, special, and unique to Lilith online: our new feature column on the Lilith blog, Feminists In Focus: Film News and Reviews. In this series, we’ll be bringing you incisive film commentary and context from fabulous (and feminist!) film critics. You’ll get a fresh perspective on films playing right in your area, and leads to movies so rare–or so new–that they haven’t even been screened yet at your local indie film festival.

For our inaugural post, we present a thought-provoking review from Amy Kronish, who writes and lectures widely on Israeli cinema. She served for 15 years as the Curator of Jewish and Israel Film at the Jerusalem Cinematheque – Israeli Film Archive, and more recently directed coexistence programs at the Jerusalem International YMCA. She is the author of two books on Israeli Film– World Cinema: Israel (1996) and Israeli Film-A Reference Guide (2003). Born and bred in the United States, she has an MA in Communications from NYU and has lived in Jerusalem since 1979. She blogs at www.israelfilm.blogspot.com.

Read on, enjoy, and talk back! We’re eager to know what you’re focusing on in the world of film.

The Human Resources Manager

Directed by Eran Riklis (Israel, 2010)

KraussAt a time when we’re seeing many films about dislocation and migrant labor, along comes a new film on the subject that is actually an atonement for society’s treatment of the migrant workers in our midst. The Human Resources Manager, directed by Eran Riklis, is not the ordinary migrant worker story. From the opening sequence we know Yulia has been murdered by a suicide bomber, and her life is now proof that migrant workers are just as human as anyone else; in fact, they can even be just as “Israeli” as any other Israeli, when it comes to the ever-present threat of death. (more…)

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