A married couple are faced with a difficult decision - to improve the life of their child by moving to another country or to stay in Iran and look after a deteriorating parent who has Alzheimer's disease.
A teacher lives a lonely life, all the while struggling over his son's custody. His life slowly gets better as he finds love and receives good news from his son, but his new luck is about to be brutally shattered by an innocent little lie.
Thomas Bo Larsen,
Bilal is 17 years old, a Kurdish boy from Iraq. He sets off on an adventure-filled journey across Europe. He wants to get to England to see his love who lives there. Bilal finally reaches ... See full summary »
An aspiring author during the civil rights movement of the 1960s decides to write a book detailing the African-American maids' point of view on the white families for which they work, and the hardships they go through on a daily basis.
Salma Zidane, a widow, lives simply from her grove of lemon trees in the West Bank's occupied territory. The Israeli defense minister and his wife move next door; the Secret Service orders the trees removed for security. The stoic Salma seeks assistance from the Palestinian Authority (useless), Israeli army (dismissive), and a young attorney, Ziad Daud, who takes the case; this older client attracts him. While the courts deliberate, the Israelis fence her trees and prohibit her from entering the grove. As the trees wither, the defense minister's wife and, separately, an Israeli journalist, look on Salma with sympathy. In this allegory, does David stand a chance against Goliath? Written by
Terrific parable scrupulously avoids the polemic but is just satisfactory as entertainment
First of all, Hiam Abbass (The Visitor, Amreeka) once more demonstrates how she can portray reactions to heartbreaking with dignity and resilience. She is a truly amazing actress. Based on an amalgam of true incidents, the Lemon Tree serves from beginning to end as a parable for what we all hope and what most of u (but not all) believe to be the majority of well-meaning human beings on both sides. Personally, they mean no harm; they wish that the violence would go away and that they could live their lives as "good neighbors" in the words of Defense Minister's wife Mira Navon (hauntingly portrayed by Rona Lipaz-Michal). However, the courage to stand up to one's own peoples to cross the borders is rare. Even when summoned, it is squashed quickly by well- meaning people afraid of the consequences. The movie remains true to itself and its characters throughout. There are few callous stereotypes to be found here. Yet, in the words of The Temptation in Ball of Confusion (NOT part of this wonderful soundtrack), "the band plays on." Relentlessly.
The story is an almost perfect parable for the heart of the entire situation. As a movie, however, I found 30 minutes of it too repetitive, just underscoring again and again the mindless yet entrenched obstacles. As an even-handed political dissertation, such defenses should earn any PhD candidate her or his "A". As entertainment, however, it hurts the pacing enough that one watching on DVD needs to splash cold water on one's face to make it all the way to the end. Please do so, however, because the ending is magnificent.
Worth seeing, just a bit slow in patches.
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