×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Last Days in Jerusalem

A Palestinian husband and wife hope emigrating to Paris will save their failing relationship in Tawfik Abu Wael's airless sophomore feature, "Last Days in Jerusalem."

With:
With: Lana Haj Yahia, Ali Badarni, Kais Nashif, Zuhaida Sabbagh, Huda Al Iman. (Arabic dialogue)

A Palestinian husband and wife hope emigrating to Paris will save their failing relationship in Tawfik Abu Wael’s airless sophomore feature, “Last Days in Jerusalem.” Though the subject is strong, the realization keeps auds at arm’s length, favoring deadening line delivery and a claustrophobic style. Pic tries to make personal the pressurized limbo of life in the Occupied Territories, but instead foregrounds an unappealing duo whose situation engenders little emotion. Fest play is unlikely to last long.

Theater actress Nour (Lana Haj Yahia) is married to older Dr. Iyad (Ali Badarni), though the spark is gone, and the hardships of life in the Palestinian Territories, combined with their marital stalemate, push them toward emigration. On the way to the airport, Iyad gets a call that the hospital is overwhelmed with victims from a bus attack, and they turn around. Nour’s self-centered mother (Huda Al Iman) offers little succor at the family home, while Iyad, overwhelmed, cracks up while operating at the hospital. Abu Wael (“Thirst”) briefly introduces some of the difficulties faced by East Jerusalem residents, yet relies on viewers’ prior knowledge to extract emotion. Visuals are clean if cold.

Popular on Variety

Last Days in Jerusalem

Israel-France-Germany-Palestinian Territories

Production: A Sophie Dulac Distribution (in France) release of a Lama Films, Sophie Dulac Prods., Cabiria Films, Neue Pegasos production. (International sales: Wide Management, Paris.) Produced by Amir Harel, Ayelet Kait, Dulac, Michel Zana, Ilan Flammer. Co-producers, Elena Trifonova, Ernst Szebedits. Directed, written by Tawfik Abu Wael.

Crew: Camera (color, HD-to-35mm), Caroline Champetier; editors, Guy Lecorne, Gaby Shihur; music, Wisam Gibram; production designer, Nael Kanj; costume designer, Hamada Atallah. Reviewed at Locarno Film Festival (competing), Aug. 11, 2011. (Also in Toronto Film Festival -- Contemporary World Cinema.) Running time: 80 MIN.

With: With: Lana Haj Yahia, Ali Badarni, Kais Nashif, Zuhaida Sabbagh, Huda Al Iman. (Arabic dialogue)

More Film

  • In ‘Motherless Brooklyn,’ Edward Norton Takes

    In ‘Motherless Brooklyn,’ Edward Norton Takes on Timeless Power Struggles

    In Edward Norton’s “Motherless Brooklyn,” the ‘50s-set New York noir detective story he produced, directed, wrote and stars in, politics are never far from the surface. But they’re not the obvious parallels to any racist autocrats from New York of modern times, but instead focus on more timeless politics – the way disabled people and [...]

  • 'Joker' Cinematographer Lawrence Sher Wins at

    'Joker' Cinematographer Lawrence Sher Wins at EnergaCamerimage Film Festival

    “Joker” cinematographer Lawrence Sher’s bid, along with director Todd Phillips, to try something “perhaps even a bit artful” won big Saturday in Torun, Poland as he took the top prize at the EnergaCamerimage Intl. Film Festival. The Golden Frog for cinematography, along with the audience prize, went to his work filming Joaquin Phoenix in the [...]

  • Roberto Schaefer

    Netflix Image Enhancement Rules Take Cinematographers by Surprise

    A Netflix requirement that cinematographers capture films in HDR, or high dynamic range, has taken many by surprise, filmmakers say, but those at the 27th EnergaCamerimage festival in Poland seem increasingly accepting of the change. DP Roberto Schaefer, whose “Red Sea Diving Resort” screened at the cinematography fest in the historic city of Torun, said [...]

  • Lech Majewski and Josh Hartnett

    Lech Majewski on ‘Valley of the Gods,’ Navaho Mythology, Josh Hartnett, Keir Dullea

    TORUN, Poland – In his latest work, “The Valley of the Gods,” director Lech Majewski explores the ancient mythology of a downtrodden people and the absurd wealth of the world’s richest man in a surreal vision of modern America. The film screened at the EnergaCamerimage Intl. Film Festival as part of special showcase honoring Majewski, [...]

  • The Red Sea Diving Resort

    Cinematographer Roberto Schaefer on Gideon Raff's Thriller ‘The Red Sea Diving Resort’

    TORUN, Poland – While Gideon Raff’s Netflix thriller “The Red Sea Diving Resort” shot largely in South Africa and Namibia, the project was a welcomed opportunity for cinematographer Roberto Schaefer due to his own memorable travels through Ethiopia. The film, which screened in the EnergaCamerimage Intl. Film Festival’s Contemporary World Cinema section, is loosely based [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content