James Miller was a documentary cameraman who died making his final film a look at the day-to-day reality of the conflict between Israel and Palestine. He died as part of that conflict when he was shot in the neck. This film charts his final work as he interviews the children who are the next generation of the conflict who have been born into the situation knowing nothing else.
Being from Northern Ireland I will admit that I have grown up with my own complex conflict of terrorists and murders to come to terms with and thus have never made time to find out a great deal of the "truth" about the situation in the Middle East. As a result I have no bias towards one side or the other which I think is a good thing since many of the reviews on this site seem to be more about people's views of the situation rather than being reviews of the actual film. With such an emotive subject perhaps this can be excused but when I watched it I tried to keep an open mind to all sides of the argument and try and review the film as it was made rather than just ranting at people.
Watching it myself I must admit to being a bit surprised by those who say it is biased towards justifying the Palestine actions or that it portrays Israel as a vicious army only attacking children for no real reason. Personally I didn't think it did either of these things and actually shows the opposite regularly. It manages to avoid issues of right/wrong by looking at the children, not the history of the conflict. True it might have been better if he had done this with children on both sides but simply following one side doesn't mean the film is biased towards them indeed seeing the next generation of Palestinians talking about wanting to be martyred while attacking Israel could hardly be seen as presenting them in a good light. The main thrust of the film is to show how hopeless the situation is both sides are right and both sides are wrong and whole generations of people seem to just want to fight and die. It is utterly depressing and the film does pretty well in bringing this out by looking how, outside of the political agenda the problem is ongoing. In Northern Ireland the will of the people is mostly for peace and negotiation but here you don't see that.
Overall this is an engagingly depressing documentary. The way it turns at the end to be more about Miller than the conflict undermines it a little bit but it is easy to forgive given what happened and considering that the film does stand as a memorial to the director. Well worth seeing although I can understand why many viewers have found it impossible to get past their politics and just watch the film.
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