The story takes place during one weekend in Tel-Aviv, in three main spots that lead to Carmel Market. There are three protagonists : 1. Tarek , a Palestinian youth from Nablus. 2. Katz , an... See full summary »
The story takes place during one weekend in Tel-Aviv, in three main spots that lead to Carmel Market. There are three protagonists : 1. Tarek , a Palestinian youth from Nablus. 2. Katz , an embittered old fellow. 3. Keren , a 17 years old girl , who grew up in a strictly religious family , left her home to become a secular youngster. The three "heroes" are loners, driven by their past and by their inner conviction. Written by
Sof Shavua B'Tel Aviv (2008) is a German-Israeli co-production shown in the U.S. as "For My Father." Directed by Dror Zahavi, the film follows a Palestinian, Tarek (Shredi Jabarin), who is sent to Tel Aviv as a suicide bomber. When the bomb fails to explode, he's left stranded in Tel Aviv until he's able to fix the detonator. The entire movie takes place during Tarek's weekend in Tel Aviv.
Director Zahavi pulls off a coup, in that he makes his protagonist's mission understandable. It's hard to think of an audience being sympathetic to a terrorist bomber, but we can at least understand the internal logic behind Tarek's actions, even while we recoil at the thought of the suffering a terrorist bomb will cause.
Added to this volatile mixture is a young, liberated Israeli woman, Keren, played by the beautiful Israeli actor Hili Yalon. Naturally, there's a chemistry between the young man and woman, although the differences that separate them make Romeo and Juliet's problems appear trivial by comparison.
It's interesting that both Tarek and Keren are not cardboard characters. They have virtues, flaws, and unexpected facets to their personalities. Also interesting is the fact that they both face as much pressure and harassment from their own communities as they do from their counterparts on the other side of the political and cultural divide.
We saw this film at the extraordinary Rochester Jewish Film Festival, but it will work well on a small screen. It's a provocative, troubling movie, and worth seeking out and watching.
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