To Die In Jerusalem

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To die in Jerusalem.  The story of to women.  One Palestinian. One Israeli. One born in raised in a refugee camp in Gaza. One born in raised between the United States and Israel.  Both students. Both teenagers. Both lost their lives together.  The two girls shared a very clear resemblance. Similar features and all, but not similar lives.  This film showed the story of their two lives.  What drove 18 year old engaged Ayat to blow herself up at a supermarket killing one…Rachel.  I real did not care for the film that much.  It was interesting about the two daughters and all, but I just got annoyed towards Rachel’s mother.  Most of the film was just her crying over her daughter, and yes I don’t agree with the death of anyone, and I am truly sorry for her loss.  But the whole movie was basically turned into her trying to contact Ayats parents.  When she gets the chance of going to Ayats refugee camp, she turns back out of fear. (Obviously a refugee camp is not a living condition nor an area an Israel women would go near).  Two years later (four years after the loss of their daughters) They finally get contact of one another, over a video phone kinda thing.

. It changes from the story of the two girls, to the story of their parents.  The story of Rachel’s mother, trying to contact Ayats parents. And the story of Ayats parents trying to bring understatement to Rachels mother; that she had no idea of her daughters plans, and nor does she support the act of suicide bombing. She stated “why would any mother be happy that their child blew themselves up.” She tries to Rachel’s mother that the life Ayat was living in, was not a happy one.  That she wouldn’t understand because she wasn’t living under occupation.  Rachel’s mother constantly repeats that she does not want to talk politics, and refuses to take any talk from Ayats father. After much frustration she decides to end the conversation.  Ayats mother tells her that she feels sorry for Rachel’s mother that she lost her daughter, that they are both at loss. But instead of accepting the fact that they live different lives, and that was the reason for Ayats drive to blow herself up that day, Rachel’s mother continues to argue, only wanting Ayats mother to apologise for her daughters action (which again she had no idea of, nor did she support).

1 Response so far »

  1. 1

    Edward said,

    This movie could have been about communication. I think, however that Rachels mother simply wanted to harangue Ayats mother, and not really talk to her…in return for NOT BULLDOZING AYATS FAMILYS’ HOME!! The movie glosses over the fact that Ayat had only recently witnessed the brutal slaying of Palestinians by Israelis just outside her door-This detail gets all of 5 seconds in the movie.As does the home demolition. She was traumatized, but the producers try to imply that the reason for her action was some secret shame or unhappiness. These women live 4 miles from one another yet Rachels mom is so out of touch with the reality of the occupation that she doesn’t realize that Ayats mother cannot simply drop in and “have a cup of coffee”!Try as it might the film completley fails to convince me that the palestinians are so different than us. Even the music and sound design seems calculated to bring sympathy only for Rachels’ family, as does everything else in the production- the quality of the filming. the time spent with family members- Rachels brothers are interviewed, Ayats were arrested. I’m glad to say the directors efforts fell flat with me – The learing, self satisfied smirk on Rachels mothers face did nothing to gain my sympathy either. Ayats mother by contrast came off as kindly, loving honest and forthright- all this in spite of production values aimed at painting her and her kind in as shabby a light as possible. Shame on the director and producer!


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