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Flipping Out (2007)

Military service in Israel is compulsory for all able-bodied Jewish men and women. Once their years of service is up they are granted a bonus which many use to travel to India to wind down ... See full summary »


Yoav Shamir
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Military service in Israel is compulsory for all able-bodied Jewish men and women. Once their years of service is up they are granted a bonus which many use to travel to India to wind down and recover from their experiences. About 90 per cent of them will use drugs during their travels and every year about two thousand of them will require professional help to recover from this drug use. The extreme psychotic break these people experience is commonly referred to as "flipping out". Written by Anonymous

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Documentary | War

User Reviews

Getting away from it all
26 February 2009 | by sol1218See all my reviews

Devastating documentary on what three years of compulsory military service does to many young Israelis who live through it. Being burnt out and mentally fatigued in serving in places like the dangerous West Bank and Gaza as well as, when the film was made, the 2006 Israeli Lebanese war these men and women are given some 15,000 shekels, or $4,300.00 in US currency, to get their head back together. Many, as much as 20,000, of these former IDF-Israeli Defense Force- members choose to travel to India and in the tranquil setting of the Himalayan Mountains and hot sun drenched forests they chill out on drugs that they have an unlimited supply of.

It's in these strange surrounding far from home that as many as 2,000 ex-Israeli servicemen and women flip out and end up with severe psychological problems because of their non stop drug use. The movie "Flipping Out" goes into detail on this phenomenon that's causing far more damage to the IDF then the casualties it suffers in combat.

We seen in the documentary how the rigors of war and occupation has caused many Israeli soldiers to turn to drugs to make then overcome what they experienced in preforming their duties as members of the IDF. Going to India to get help only leads many Israelis to get addicted to dangerous drugs which they for the most part uses as much as 14 hours a day!

There's of course a number of self help programs in India sponsored by the Israeli Government as well as the local Jewish fundamentalist Chabd Houses that do their best to get these soldiers back on the right track as drug-free and productive Israeli citizens. But without the soldiers willing to get help all they can do is get those hopelessly addicted back to Israel to get expert psychological care and drug rehabilitation treatment.

What the movie "Flipping Out" brings out is how war can effect a person's mental health if he or she's not ready to face the horrors that it exposes them to. In the case of the mostly strung out Israeli soldiers living and partying, on drugs, on the Indian sub-Continent that even trying to escape from their past, as man and women in combat, is anything but an easy solution.

The one good thing going for these unfortunate lost souls in the windiness is that their government accepts and takes full responsibility for the mental and psychical, in sending then to war, suffering that their going through. These soldiers are given all the help-free of charge- that they could get in order to put their shattered lives back together again. Which is a lot more then the help that's given to returning veterans from similar conflicts in far off lands by the governments who so willingly and readily sent them to fight and die there.

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2007 (Israel) See more »

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