Scene from Defiance

Scene from Defiance

With the news continuing from Gaza and Israel each day, I decided to escape through cinema, and see some films in NYC over the past few weeks. Looking through the offerings, what could I see?

Well first there is DEFIANCE. Defiance stars the actors Daniel Craig, Liev Schreiber and Jamie Bell and is directed by Edward Zwick. Zwick wrote the screenplay with Clay Frohman (the grandson of a Vilnius Jew) and based it on the book of the same name by Nechama Tec. The story is based on the true exploits of three Jewish farmers, Tuvia, Zus, and Asael Bielski, in the forest of Belarus during World War II. The brothers were born in Stankevich and escaped from the Novgorod ghetto after 4000 Jews were slaughtered in a mass execution. They weren’t saints and had their sibling rivalries, but were still able to resist Nazis and Nazi supporters and 1,200 Jews survived the war under their leadership. Zwick, who filmed the project in Lithuania, was attracted to this Holocaust story since it was not about the iconography of Jewish victimization, but about fighting back.

A Jewish Harvard grad, known for his earlier film, “Blood Diamonds” and “Glory,” Zwick was asked whether by opening in Europe, he would create an equivalency between the current situation in Gaza and the story of Defiance. Zwick replied that, “…the argument comparing what the Jews are doing and what the Nazis did is just such a preposterous exaggeration, because one when one uses the word genocide, you have to ask: If Israel were interested in genocide than they have more than the means necessary to accomplish such a thing, and given that, in context, they’re using a certain amount of restraint. Yes, I know the word “restraint” is hard to talk about, given what’s happening in Gaza, but it is a type of restraint. What I’m responding to is equivalence. Words are important. Genocide is a word thrown around too easily. This is happening now in Poland and Lithuania. There’s an attempt to make an equivalence between alleged war crimes of the Bielskis and the Holocaust.“ Asked about comparing Israel and Hamas, Zwick replied, “What I see is that there is a double standard, that on one side you have an organization dedicated to creating the maximum amount of destruction and horror, and doing it in a way that is deliberately bloody-minded and terrorizing. On the other hand you have an extremely powerful state with all the means at its disposal to create a horrifying result, and yet trying, despite the resulting horrible casualties, nonetheless seeming to use extraordinary restraint. It’s really an interesting contradiction.”

I skipped this film for the moment…

My other choice was Golden Globe Winner and potential Oscar nominee “WALTZ WITH BASHIR.” It is an animated film, and soon to be a graphic novel, by Ari Folman, that concerns Filman’s recollections of Israel’s 1982 War in Lebanon and the role of him and his comrades in Beirut and Southern Lebanon. Interviewed by The New York Times Sunday magazine, director Ari Folman, said that his film will always feel up to date, because something will always happen again [whether it be Lebanon in 1982, Gaza in 2009, or whatever is next]. Folman’s parents met in the Lodz ghetto in Poland during WWII and married in August 1944. Their honeymoon was spent at Auschwitz. This had a definite influence on his thoughts about war and non combatants.

I skipped this film for the moment as well.

Hmmm.. How about ONE DAY YOU’LL UNDERSTAND, Directed by Amos Gitai. In this film, during the Klaus Barbie trial of 1987, a French businessman, Victor Bastien, uncovers the truth about his family’s actions during the Holocaust It is a meditation on loss, memory, identity and a family legacy and it stars Jeanne Moreau as his mother Rivka.

I skipped this film for the moment as well.

My decision? BOLT. The animated story of a dog who is lives a hermetically sealed existence and is lied to, so that he thinks he has super powers, and can fight crime and terrorism for the good of the world. What a nice fantasy.

See. It is possible to escape the themes of the news

Isn’t it?

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  • Another Richard Silverstein production. Yay for him. Let him know Israel declared a unilateral cease fire but Hamas has announced they intend to keep fighting. That provides him with a great opportunity: when the IDF inevitably returns their fire, he can write another long, boring, politically correct petition equating the violence on both sides.

  • wow larry, i can understand the stress you must face living in gaza, facing daily israeli bombardment, watching your neigbors being bombed to death, watching death and destruction, wow what a stressful period

    oh wait larry you live in israel right, so tell me what stress are you facing???

    the only stress israelis face is deciding which flavor peanut butter to eat.

    yeah, you israelis really are living in tough times

  • the characters portrayed in the movie have been accused of murdering non nazi christians and there is a debate going on in their respective country on how to write them as murderers in the history books

    considering the history of kapos(camp jews who killed jews)
    i wouldnt be surprised that they intentionally murdered non nazi christians

  • sheesh, you people have turned the holocaust into a thriving industry, you really are good at making money,lol

    you relate everything to the holocaust,everything

    “hi i am a jew, are you a palestinian… holocaut holocaust holocaust”

    using the holocaust as a prism to see every conflict is fucking stupid, 27 million russians were killed by germans, so do you see russians shouting “we suffered the most,give us money and sympathy,if we commit crimes,remember we can be forgiven because of the holocaust”

    you guys have over played the holocaust card too many times

  • imbecile / CTC / we re human too / goyim / …, I can only imagine how much stress you must be facing sitting on the internet all day and thinking of new screennames. Funny, I thought Israelis permitted there to be no infrastructure whatsoever in the Palestinian territories according to your previously made claims.

  • i never mentioned i was a palestinian did i, infact what makes you think i am an arab??

  • You used first person plural personal pronouns in reference to Palestinians, which I found strikingly odd as Palestinians don’t consider themselves Arabs and are not consider Arabs by the Arabic world. They merely adopted the Arabic language alongside the Muslim faith.

  • palestinians dont consider themselves to be arab??????????????????????????????????????


    froylein sit back, take a couple of pills and think before you post

    palestinians adopted the arab language???

    so you are admitting that palestinians are original inhabitants of the holy land

    thank you froylein, this proves it, you are the alien european settlers pretending to be a middle easterner, i am geussing you are already in europe, take the rest of your jewish brothers and sisters with you

  • CTC, actually my genetic material has been proved to stem from the Middle East. I doubt this in your case. I know several Palestinians, all of which told me that Palestinians do not consider themselves to be Arabic as their folklore / popular history tells another story. Likewise, all Arabs I know have told me that Palestinians are not Arabs. Additionally, they mentioned that while as Muslims they feel a certain compassion for their co-religionists, many Arabs considered Palestinians low-lives that speak a very poor dialect of Arabic.

    At that, I haven’t admitted anything. Get off the booze before you reply. There were not even Palestinians in the Holy Land during the time of the Crusades, which are well-documented in secular, Christian and Muslim sources. Turks, yes. Egyptians, yes. Palestinians, no.

  • More and more I get the feeling CTC is a 16-year-old Midwestern whiteboy with serious identity issues whose idea of fun is to get on Daddy’s computer & try to get a rise out of us…
    Maybe if we don’t feed him he’ll go elsewhere.

  • Sheela 🙂

    Anyway, has anyone seen ‘Defiance’ yet? I thought it was really good, but I’m quite fond of Daniel Craig so that could be part of it!

  • froylein i find it hard to believe that you have middle eastern blood

    neither your karytype nor your mitochondrial dna will show any link to any desert semitic group

    tell me which chromosome is the jewish chromosome????

    froylein please dont try to explain genetics to me, your knowledge of genetics is amateurish at best

    jewish chromosomal studies have shown time and time again they are not related to any desert semitic group, the “cohen” gene is just a gene with a name, if i decide to name one of my genes “cohen” does that mean i am a jew?

  • ummm.. what happened here? I was writing about a doggie cartoon film.. I dont reside in the Middle East. I reside on the Upper West

  • CTC, do you mean karyotype?

    Anyhow, regardless of what you claim, the Treverers could be traced back to the Middle East. Arabs stole our land in today-Syria. Please, go molest Arabic weblogs on my behalf.

  • Hi Yael!
    Really want to see “Defiance” and “Waltz Wih Bashir” but ever since Netflix we’ve gotten pretty spoiled (no noisy, rude audiences to deal with, overpriced tickets, cruddy food, you can stop & rewind if the dialogue was unclear, etc., etc.) So what’ll happen is we’ll wait for it to be released on DVD and by that time we’ll have long forgotten about it, sad to say. 🙁
    p.s. My sister-in-law’s rather sweet on Mr. Craig too. 🙂

  • found this on another blog, very funny.

    The Little Dickie Silverstein Marching Song

    I am a little kapo,
    It makes my mommy mad,
    Cause when I am a kapo,
    Those Zionists get sad!

    I celebrate the jihad,
    and terror all the while,
    I fill my blog and web page,
    With loud salutes of Sieg Heil!

    I want to see them Zraelis,
    All dumped out in the sea,
    My swastika a waving,
    Cause everything’s bout me.

  • Larry I will tell you what happened here , You wrote five long paragraphs about how you “Jews” were genocided by Nazi almost hundred years ago and how that gives you enough material to make movies out of for the next 1000 years , and a card to pull out every time you cause pain to other humans.
    Then feeling you had done duty to secure enough guilt and sympathy in people for next few months , you added three lines about ‘Bolt’ .
    You can postpone guilt about Gaza all you can but that wont change anything for anyone. Shortages of basics , and lack of identity and liberty still abound in Palestine.

    I’m not Palestine nor Muslim just a Nazi like President Carter

  • Singahole, I will tell you what happened here. You came into a site, misrepresented what a post was about, got in some criticism of Jews who still have raw wounds about something that happened just 70 years ago where millions of Jews were murdered and then proceeded to complain about how somebody was seeking to avoid “guilt” about Gaza.

    Well yeah, basics and liberty are lacking in Gaza but they have plenty of rockets to launch at Israel based on their daily firing into Israeli civilian centers. And they still have brutal dictators, in the guise of an Islamic party that seeks to destroy Israel, running the show and, you know, pilfering UN supplies intended for the same hungry masses they govern.

    So you may not be a Palestinian, and you may not be a Muslim, and nobody here called Carter a Nazi, but you are willfully blind like Carter to the fact that you can’t just ignore the actions of the Palestinians that led to the attack on Gaza.

    Still, you get many bonus points for putting in lots of Holocaust references in a really nasty let’s-turn-the-mass-murder-of-their-families-on-it’s-head attempt to find a way to criticize Jews over the Gaza offensive. Next time don’t forget to mention how the Palestinian rockets are primitive and don’t really kill or injure that many Israelis.