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Campfire (2004)

Medurat Hashevet (original title)
2:14 | Trailer

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The story of one woman's personal battle for acceptance, but also a portrait of a political movement that has forever affected millions of lives in the Middle East.



8 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Michaela Eshet ...
Rachel Gerlik
Tami Gerlik
Moshe Weinstock
Avi Grainik ...
Idit Teperson ...
Shula (as Edith Teperson)
Itay Turgeman ...
Barak Lizork ...
Danny Zahavi ...
Dina Senderson ...
Ofer Seker ...


Israeli Rachel Gerlik has been widowed for one year. Despite not ever having loved her husband, she feels she now needs to move on with her life. She plans to sell his car, which has not been touched in that year. She starts dating again, solely on blind dates set up by her friend Shula Kupfer, first with the insecure Yossi Moraly and then with renowned cantor Moshe Weinstock. Most importantly in Rachel's plan is to be accepted into the founding group of a new ideologically-based West Bank settlement yet to be built, the acceptance committee chaired by Shula's husband, Motkeh Kupfer, considered one of the most important figures in religious Zionism. She has many factors working against her in being accepted, most specifically there not being a man in the household. Regardless, Rachel and her family are accepted on a trial basis. Her family consists of two teen-aged daughters, Esti and Tami, both who believe that their mother has lost touch with the realities of their lives, especially... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




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Release Date:

9 September 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Campfire  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Yehoram Gaon's first apperance in the movie comes shortly after a clip from the movie Mivtsa Yonatan (1977) is shown - a clip where Yehoram Gaon is giving a speech. See more »


When Rachel comes home after her meeting with the founding committee, when Tammy has locked herself in her room and Rachel is talking to Esti in the Living Room, the shots of Rachel show her with her hands cupped over the top of a soda pop bottle, but the shots of Esti (from behind Rachel) show Rachel's hands cupped on her knapsack on the table. See more »


[subtitled version]
Yossi Moraly: I know you're waiting for someone better than me. I can even understand it. I just want you to know that I love you. I think you're a very special woman.
[there is a long silence]
Yossi Moraly: It's okay. You don't have to answer me. Good night.
Rachel Gerlik: Good night.
[Rachel turns to walk away then stops]
Rachel Gerlik: I'm not waiting for someone better than you. Don't even say that. You're the nicest person I've ever met.
Yossi Moraly: So what are you waiting for?
Rachel Gerlik: I don't know. I'm waiting to fall in love. I'm 42 years old and ...
See more »


Features Mivtsa Yonatan (1977) See more »


Blind Date Rag
Written by Jonathan Bar-Giora
See more »

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User Reviews

Gut wrenching occasionally, biased consistently but altogether impressive
4 February 2005 | by (jerusalem, israel) – See all my reviews

The first question that popped in my head once the ending credits appeared, was- should I be offended?

This movie, after all, deals with religious-Zionists and I am a movie-buff secular so maybe the depiction of this much maligned (for no justifiable reason, in my humble opinion) sector was credible and not a slanderous attack. I believe I have reached a conclusion.

Today, when a new rift in Israel is emerging over the implementation of the disengagement program lead by prime minister, Ariel Sharon, it's easy to relate to the 1981 struggle against the evacuation of the Sinai peninsula after the signing of the historical peace accord with Egypt.

1981 found Tammy Gerlik (Hani Furstenberg in a wonderful performance) in a Jerusalemite neighborhood with her older sister and widowed mom who decides to move to a new settlement in the occupied territories with her circle of the religious, patriotic and unified but also hypocrite and mistrusting circle of friends. It also finds Tammy in her teenage years when romantic feelings and self-defining questioning begin to emerge. Her generally cheerful personality suffers a major setback when Tammy is nearly raped by a violent teenager with the cheering of his dubious "buddies". With a mother too self-absorbed, and "friends" that tag her as a promiscuous girl, she finds a soul mate in her rebellious sister that is alienated to her mother for abolishing her chance of privacy in a very boisterously funny scene that involves a hammer (can't elaborate, sorry).

In the meantime, the mother, Rachel (Micaela Eshet, in a reasonably good but not much more, performance), is a 42 year old strong woman who had married too early and went through life without falling in love. While shunning as delicately as possible the courting of a highly renowned and severely boring, cantor, she forms a friendship with, Yossi, a bachelor bus driver/ultimate loser who has lost hope of ever conjugating (let alone, wed) an actual woman.

With Yossi as a refuge from the pretense of a strong willed woman, Rachel realizes the true nature of her friends, the frailty of their loyalty and worst of all, their obsession of sweeping unflattering phenomena under the carpet, even at the grave price of perpetuating it for posterity.

The movie is well acted, credibly written and even manages to give the audience the atmosphere of the early 80's when Israelis had one TV channel to watch, one telephone company and a strong sense of patriotism that is disparaged and demonetized by too many these days.

Which brings me to my question in the beginning of this review, should I, the secular guy (who identifies with Yossi the bus driver more than he wishes), should be offended when the religious society is presented in a very critical manner.

The answer to that question is simple: when you are offended on behalf of a grown up group for being disparaged, you might be disparaging it yourself by deciding for them how they should feel.

I feel, personally, that the director, Yosef Cedar (who grew up in a religious background but is pretty estranged to it, according to his own testimony) decided to "indict" his origins. As a result, the viewer is deprived from an unbiased impression of one of the most enigmatic, controversial and riveting sector in contemporary Israeli society.

The movie won as best film in the Israeli Oscar competition and its victory was outshone by the fact that the movie "sof haolam smola" which was one of the most popular films in Israeli history, wasn't even nominated in any of the major categories.

Unfair representation of "Sof haolam smola" in the Israeli Oscar robbed the movie of the buzz it could have generated. Also, the film's unfair representation of a certain sector in the Israeli society left me questioning its antagonism, rather than enjoy its undeniable qualities. Qualities it hones in abundance.

8.5 out of 10 in my FilmOmeter.

8 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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