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Zaytoun (2012)

6.6
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 688 users   Metascore: 39/100
Reviews: 4 user | 35 critic | 15 from Metacritic.com

Beirut, 1982: a young Palestinian refugee helps an Israeli fighter pilot escape from PLO captivity because he wants to visit his ancestral family home. En route through war-torn Lebanon their relationship develops into a close bond.

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Title: Zaytoun (2012)

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
...
Fahed
...
Syrian Officer
...
Leclair
Loai Nofi ...
Aboudi
...
Seedo (as Tarik Kopti)
...
Plo Fighter
...
Im Ahmed
Jony Arbid ...
Abu Fahed (as Joni Arbib)
Ashraf Farah ...
Khaled
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Adham Abu Aqel ...
Ahmed
Nidal Badarneh ...
Mustafa
Hezi Gangina ...
Morad Hassan ...
Rami
Michel Khoury
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Storyline

Beirut, 1982: a young Palestinian refugee helps an Israeli fighter pilot escape from PLO captivity because he wants to visit his ancestral family home. En route through war-torn Lebanon their relationship develops into a close bond.

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Details

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Release Date:

20 September 2013 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Zaytoun  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$4,100 (USA) (20 September 2013)

Gross:

$42,286 (USA) (15 November 2013)
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

While not explicitly stated in the film, the word "zaytoun" is Arabic for "olive", and refers to the tree that Fahed carries. See more »

Soundtracks

Zaytoun
Written and arranged by Peter Liddle
Performed by Dry the River
Courtesy of Sony Music Entertainment UK Ltd/RCA Victor
Published by Transgressive Publishing Ltd. administered by Warner/Chappell Limited
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User Reviews

 
Can the wall of hatred by taken down?
31 July 2013 | by (Upstate New York) – See all my reviews

Zaytoun (2012) is an Israeli film directed by Eran Riklis. Abdallah El Akal stars as Fahed, a Palestinian adolescent who lives in a camp in Lebanon. The American Actor Stephen Dorff is the Israeli fighter pilot Yoni, who is captured by the PLO when his plane is shot down.

The two make common cause when their goals come together. Yoni wants to escape and return to his unit in Israel. Fahed wants Yoni to take him to Palestine. When he gets to Palestine, he wants to plant an olive tree that the family has kept alive in the hope that they can return to their home and replant it.

The basic plot is not new. We saw it over 50 years ago when Sidney Poitier and Tony Curtis starred in the 1958 movie "The Defiant Ones." Poitier and Curtis--natural enemies--are literally chained together. El Akal and Dorff are symbolically chained together, but the concept is the same. Can two people from different camps, who dislike and distrust each other, work together to achieve something important to both of them? Can the wall of hatred that separates them be weakened or even taken down?

Although the plot isn't new, the movie is still spellbinding. The actors are both excellent, and the settings look and feel real. The story requires some suspension of disbelief, but the gritty, authentic atmosphere, as well as the interaction between the pilot and the boy, worked for me.

We saw this movie at the Little Theatre, as part of the first-rate Rochester Jewish Film Festival. It will work well enough on DVD, but seeing it on the large screen would be better. For some reason, Zaytoun carries a dismal 6.2 rating on IMDb. This doesn't make sense to me--it's a much better film than that. Find it and see it!


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