From the producers of Incendies, this is another strong film about the Middle East, this time the ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestine. The film handles its often-controversial subject matter realistically and from the perspective of an outsider – a young obstetrician working at a UN hospital in the Ramallah refugee camp. Chloe lives in Jerusalem and commutes to the camp in Ramallah daily, queuing for long periods of time to pass through the numerous checkpoints. This gives her time to really see how badly the soldiers treat the frustrated crowds. This is a stark contrast to her free life in Israel. When Chloe befriends a patient, Rand, whose husband is awaiting jail, she and her activist brother introduce Chloe to life on the Palestinian side. When Rand loses her baby because she couldn’t get through a checkpoint fast enough to get the urgent medical care she needed, she irrationally blames Chloe, even though Chloe tried desperately to intervene. Devastated and shocked by the dramatic turn of events, Chloe spirals out of control and winds up violating her Hippocratic oath in an extremely disturbing way. By using Chloe, essentially a cipher there to give an outsider’s viewpoint on proceedings, and by having much of the film lensed from her point of view, we’re dragged into the story in an unusually deep way. The unsolvable nature of the conflict is starkly shown, as is the helplessness any outsider has to feel when faced with a war that really can’t be won or even mitigated. Anyone who has an opinion, perspective or thinks they might have a solution to the problems in this area should make this a must-see film.
1hr 42mins long
M Violence and offensive language.