Checkpoint: The Herded Life of Palestinians

Information Liberation
Monday, March 12, 2007

Documentary filmmaker Yoav Shamir's depiction of the checkpoints that the Israel Defense Forces man in the Palestinian Authority.

 

Extended Description

This is a film that simply provides a "fly on the wall" account of various checkpoints on the Palestine-Israel border. Miles from anywhere, people travel frequently, walking long distances, to go to hospitals or to work. The Israeli guards like to 'show them' and routinely harass them by making them stand in the blazing sun, driving rain, or deep snow for many hours (eg up to ten hours) before returning their papers and often sending them home. They are polite, but admit to the cameras that this is how they deal with people - force them to stand in the rain.

It could almost be a laid back Palestinian expose of what is happening at the checkpoints except - and here is the double-whammy - it is made by an Israeli, with Israeli funding - and it has been snapped up and promoted by the Israelis in cinemas but also the Palestinians - what is perhaps even more shocking (according to the director Yoav Shamir at the Edinburgh International Film Festival) it is now being used by the Israeli forces as training material for their guards.

I also like the style of it, no commentary, just "fly on the wall"-filming (minus the single comment made by the cameraman to a soldier) - In my opinion that is real documentary. You get to see what is going on and is allowed to develop your own interpretation. - p2P2p

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