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Juan Diego Botto,
A competent drama, although it doesn't quite grasp the nettle
In this little-seen movie (I'm not sure it played more than a week
anywhere), Israel's security services are worried about a possible
assassination attempt against Ariel Sharon; they whittle their list of
potential assassins down to a handful, each with a different political
or psychological motive; and the movie follows those suspects. Of
course there is little expectation that the movie will actually depart
from history and present the assassination of Ariel Sharon. But as the
film depicts the suspects and their personal lives, we are drawn into
their stories and we experience suspense as we hope that none of them
is really going to try something so destructive. (The film seems to
have the least political sympathy for the Orthodox Jewish suspect, but
it elicits personal sympathy for him by contrasting him with his
stubborn father.) The shortness of the short list of suspects is surely
a little unrealistic (out of millions of Israelis) and the
relationships that happen to link some of them with some of the
security men are ridiculously coincidental, but I'd say suspension of
disbelief is achieved thanks to cinematic professionalism. What may
have sunk the movie into obscurity is the lack of a firm editorial
statement among all the political dilemmas presented. I'm not sure I
would have liked the statement had it been made, but at least I would
have felt that someone had a better reason for raising political issues
than simply keeping me alert for an hour and a half.
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