Showing @ Cineworld, Edinburgh, Mon 24 & Wed 26 Jun

Khaled Jarrar / Palestine/UAE/Lebanon / 2013 / 70 min

The decision of newly elected Palestinian prime minister Rami Hamdallah to resign after only eighteen days in office, citing a dispute with president Abbas about resuming peace talks with Israel, shows how fractious a subject the conflict is. Depicting the enterprising Palestinians who smuggle many hundreds of Arabs over the military protected barrier into Israeli occupied Jerusalem, Khaled Jarrar’s documentary is a powerfully raw portrayal of non-militant Palestinians’ struggling under the inequality of Israel’s rule.

The brutality of the decades long discord is well documented and Jarrar doesn’t bother reiterating this background, allowing cracked phone screens and scarred hands to set the tone. As with 5 Broken Cameras Jarrar’s often unsteady, hand-shot footage adds to the realism of this compelling and emotionally evocative David and Goliath tale. Never formally introducing anybody and with few facial shots, the desired anonymity emphasises the very real sense of danger undertaken by these radicals of circumstance, heightened in scenes crouching out of Israeli soldiers’ sight. Despite this danger, there’s a brazenness to their actions, attempting crossings in daylight and (seemingly) unafraid of making loud noises, their fearlessness a symptom of their desperation. A little repetitive, the volume of people affected by the wall’s erection (the separated mother and daughter touching fingertips under the concrete) highlights just how many Palestinians live restricted and inhibited lives.

Showing as part of the Edinburgh International Film Festival 2013

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