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Review: The Settlers

— by RON WILKINSON —

Even the uninitiated and marginally informed will recognize Shimon Dotan’s documentary as having a decided agenda, but to call it a propaganda film is going too far. It is composed of archival footage of the history of the Sinai Peninsula, the Gaza Strip, the Golan Heights, and the West Bank starting with the 1967 Six-Day War. Winning that conflict Israel tripled its territory while its new borders greatly improved its security. This archival footage is complemented by extensive interviews with a ride range of settlers in the area, most espousing their right, duty and destiny to live in the area.

These territories have been “occupied” by Israel. Although, according to provisions of the Geneva Accords, civilians are forbidden to “occupy” land taken through military victory. (CONTINUED)


Review: The Levelling

— by BEV QUESTAD — Set in the scenic Somerset Levels across the misty Bristol Channel of the Atlantic opposite Wales, this poignant film is the master teacher on reunification and redemption. Beginning with a happy revelry in mid-October, the guys get hot and riled up as they dance around a fire. Charlie is celebrating […][...]


Review: Land of Mine

— by RON WILKINSON — In post-World War II Denmark, a group of young German POWs is forced to clear a beach of thousands of land mines under the watch of a Danish sergeant who slowly learns to appreciate their plight. Roland Møller plays Sgt. Carl Rasmussen, a battle-hardened soldier who has seen the worst […][...]


On the Map: Seattle Jewish Film Festival

— by BEV QUESTAD — Laugh, cry, love, gather and celebrate are the words for the 2017 annual Seattle Jewish Film Festival (SJFF), held March 25 – April 2, 2017. On its final-day, an exceptionally well-made documentary, “On the Map” with legendary Bill Walton narrating, will entertain audiences with a gripping account of the Israeli […][...]


Review: You’re Killing Me Susana

— by BEV QUESTAD — Yeah, Susana (Verónica Echegui) is killing everyone watching this film. She’s Natalie Portman-beautiful and haunting — no match for Eligio (Gael García Bernal), her weak-minded husband. She is the responsible, talented, good-looking writer and he is an irresponsible, intellectually dull, immature soap actor. When a relationship is so unequal, it’s […][...]


2017 PIFF winners announced

— by BEV QUESTAD — The results of the 40th annual Portland International Film Festival Audience Awards are in. With 98 feature films, 66 shorts and an audience of close to 35,000, winning overall for Best Narrative was “Truman,” a poignant story of friendship at the end of life. However, the most touted film and […][...]


I Am Not Madame Bovary: Official Trailer

— by BEV QUESTAD — The fabulously diversified Portland International Film Festival has been extended to Feb. 27. An example of one of PIFF’s exquisite foreign films is the picturesque Chinese blockbuster by Feng Xiaogang. Known as China’s Steven Spielberg, he uses a unique screen that alternates between a circle and square, but finally becomes […][...]


Starless Dreams: Trailer

— by BEV QUESTAD — Award-winning director Mehrdad Oskouei was given access to an incarceration facility for girls 18 and under in Iran. Gently asking them why they were there and what their hopes for the future were, he discovers a greater societal transgression than the girls’ crimes. The girls wash their own clothes and […][...]


Raising Bertie: First Clip

— by BEV QUESTAD — Thought-provoking as well as deeply disturbing, this slice of North Carolinian life for the working poor makes a case for at least one intervention – by Vivian Saunders. Fueled by love and a sense of responsibility, Saunders is a source of common strength for Bertie County. Margaret Byrne, director and […][...]