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Yasser Arafat ...
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Ehud Barak ...
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Benjamin Netanyahu ...
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Jasan Yosef ...
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Documentary

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5 June 2003 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Rumble In Ramallah
14 January 2009 | by (Yurp) – See all my reviews

This is a cinema verité, low key video documentary on Oliver Stone not getting an audition with Jassir Arafat, and interviewing a bunch of other guys (mostly top Israeli politicians including Ehud Barak, Shimon Peres and Benjamin Netanjahu, but also three al-Aqsa "martyrs") instead. It makes for interesting viewing, and conveys a good idea of the everyday squalor the Palestinians are living in, the haughtiness of the Fatah government, and the sheer complexity of the situation.

This was recorded only a few years ago, but it already feels almost nostalgic, with Arafat's familiar ugly face and concrete rhetoric, suicide bombings and war in the streets of Ramallah. The olden days and their simpler ways, I guess. The current war against in Gaza seems a lot nastier by comparison. Nothing ever seems to change for the better in that region.

I think Oliver Stone's approach is a little too naive, and I hated all those art students constantly shoving their cameras into the faces of their interviewees. I also would have liked to see more of the common people and the political "middle management" rather than the celebrity talking heads. But it's still interesting viewing because it catches a rarely seen glimpse of the day-to-day life in Palestine.


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