Zaytoun (Olive)


Director: Eran Riklis Cast: Stephen Dorff, Abdallah el Akal, Ali Suliman Genre: Drama Country of Origin: UK, Israel 2012 Language: Arabic, Hebrew, English with English subtitles 110 mins. Rating: ***

Yoni (Stephen Dorff), an F-16 Israeli pilot crash lands in war torn Beirut prior to Israel's invasion of Lebanon. Captured and imprisoned by the PLO amongst whom is Fahad (Abdallah el Akal), a 12 year old Palestinian refugee living in a refugee camp who longs to return to the family house in what was Palestine and plant his father's small olive tree.

Fahad frees Yoni on condition that he takes him and the olive tree to Palestine and this unlikely pair begin a journey fraught with danger.

Abdullah el Akal gives a convincing performance but overall it's offers a simplistic approach to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict suggesting that mutual cooperation will cure the ills. If only that were true.

Interestingly at the end of the film there's a hint of the Sabre and Shatila massacres of Palestinians refugees.

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