The new animated Israeli feature, “Waltz with Bashir” premiered at the Cannes Film Festival last week to extremely positive reviews and I must say I am REALLY looking forward to seeing this one. Directed by Israeli documentarian Ari Folman (one of the writers of the HBO series, “In Treatment”), “Waltz” is largely based on actual interviews with 1982 Lebanon war veterans – and Folman’s personal memory of the Sabra/Shatilla massacre of Palestinian civilians.
According to one review:
I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that I wouldn’t be surprised to see Waltz with Bashir show up on the slate at Telluride in September, and even less so to see it wind up with an Oscar nod come January. Folman has made a beautiful, disturbing and deeply compelling film that documents the horrors to which he and his friends were witnesses, while offering hope that he and others might, some day, heal from the ravages of war. While it’s too much to hope that this or any film might have an impact in the real world that could put an end to mankind’s seemingly endless capacity to hurt one another, films like Waltz with Bashir offer us the opportunity to learn about and from history. If those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat it, perhaps those who do might, eventually, build a world where such atrocities no longer exist.
From the looks of the trailer above, “Waltz” looks to be one of the most original and significant Israeli feature films in recent memory. It is scheduled to open in Israel on June 5. Here’s hoping it travels stateside soon.