The Attack Reviews

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Super Reviewer
November 20, 2014
A tragic and sad film that explores the complexity of a never-ending conflict through the impossibility of confronting someone for answers when that person is dead - and even those unnecessary details offered in the last fifteen minutes are not able to dilute its intensity and urgency.
Bathsheba Monk
Super Reviewer
August 9, 2013
Just sad. Amin Jaafari, a Palestinian surgeon, seems to have "made it" by being accepted--personally and professionally--by the elite of Israeli society. But not really. The Israeli attitude is paternalistic "we allowed you to become this" but the attitude of his Palestinian relatives--whom he abandoned in his quest for acceptance--is that he is a traitor to his people. And maybe he is. And maybe, as his nephew says, his wife was worth more to the resistance alive (she has money and a veneer of respectability) but she did put her boot on the line. (Quick aside, that is the one flaw of this movie--that she would do this is totally unbelievable, but it does set up some interesting questions.) That's all we're left with at the end of this very subtle and moving movie: questions. If anyone is feeling good about where we are as a species, this will knock some sense into you.
Super Reviewer
July 7, 2013
Just before Dr. Amin Jaafari(Ali Suliman) is set to receive a prestigious lifetime award in Tel Aviv, he gets a brief a phone call from his wife Siham(Reymond Amsalem) who is away visiting relatives. As he points out in the acceptance speech, he is the first Arab to receive such an award. The following day, like many of his colleagues, he tends to the wounds of those injured in a suicide bomb, including one dissatisfied customer. Later, he gets a call in the middle of the night which is never a good sign and in this case involves going to the hospital to identify his wife's remains who is now thought to be the suicide bomber of the previous day, as Moshe(Uri Gavriel) starts in with the intense questioning.

"The Attack" is a powerful, heartbreaking and provocative neo-noir that succeeds on both a psychological and a political level. First and foremost, it is a portrait of a man going through the five stages of grief while wondering how much he really knew the love of his life. As such, the nature of identity is explored on both sides of the wall that now separates Israel and the Occupied Territories and which is never as simple as many people there would like to believe. All of which is seen through the eyes of somebody with a unique perspective on the ongoing tragedy and who in the end owes nobody anything.
Super Reviewer
April 9, 2015
A very very touching story of a husband coming to grips with the secret deadly life of his wife. The couple represents the many sides of the Palestinian people themselves.
½ March 30, 2014
There is nothing wrong with The Attack but it just didn't resonate with me the way movies of this genre tend to do. Perhaps it was the mediocre acting or maybe I just am unable to comprehend the actual tension between Israel and Palestine but for some reason even though it is well written and decently acted The Attack just never captured me into the tense relations between the two sets of people.
½ July 21, 2013
Amin is a successful Arab doctor living in Tel Aviv. Tensions between Jews and Arabs are already high in Israel, but Amin has accepted his new home and its people. Some of his closest friends are Jews. However, his life shattered when his wife is suspected to be the suicide bomber of an attack on a restaurant that kills 17 Israelis. Amin soon finds out secrets about his wife that he wished he hadn't and the more he looks for answers, the more questions pile up. This is a very sobering, engaging and tragic film about the Middle Eastern conflict placed upon a regular man. It tackles terrorism head on and delves into the politics and beliefs of its dark roots. This fantastic foreign film from Lebanese director Ziad Doueiri is a film that will have you thinking and discussing for days after you have seen it. This is one of the best films of the year.

Grade: A
½ July 6, 2013
Good movie, but its so relentlessly bleak that it's hard to take. Very good acting helps it. Wish it had less conversations with the husband and his dead wife.
May 20, 2015
Overall a strong film that poses some hard questions. The protagonist's decisions in the end are head-scratchers though.
½ January 6, 2015
A subtle and well-acted drama that does justice to the complexity of its subject matter and refuses to offer easy answers to its difficult questions.
April 12, 2014
For anyone who wishes to view both sides of a complex issue, this is the movie to see.
June 17, 2014
Intense and suspenseful -- must see!
October 26, 2013
It's a sorrowful film, as Amin finds some answers he doesn't want to hear, and discovers that other answers are simply unknowable.
April 22, 2014
Once a widower's disbelief is eliminated, searing questions must be answered. Harrowing.
½ March 25, 2014
Parts of Amin's character seems rather incredulous --its as he's been sheltered from the whole Israeli-Palestinian conflict all his life living in his ivory tower of a hospital as an eminent surgeon in Tel Aviv --and worse, to find out his wife has been complicit all along in a plot to use herself as a suicide bomber to maim/kill Israelis and going all the way to Nabulis to confront Islamic fanatics about her death --all of this is just a bit too hard to believe. Even with all of this, there are bits of the movie that are moving and demands introspection --e.g. graffiti written in English at the site of the bombing "Ground Zero"; his nephews compunction about getting Amin's wife involved in the suicide bombing; and when Amin was chastised by his Israeli collegue, who had previously sheltered him when he was questioned by the Israeli authority, for not turning in the Palestinians and was called a turncoat & an ingrate. And all of this is done very delicately and very thought provoking fashion given how hard it is to cover the subject of the conflict. A very watchable film.
½ May 31, 2013
Boy, this movie really says a lot. ..... Ya know, someone has to stop fighting. Otherwise it will never end. Each side says they are fighting a cause for justice - or for God. But as long as they are fighting against flesh and blood, they are not fighting for God. I know...the Muslim extremists against the Christian fanatics. But you all are both wrong! There is only one side that is truth. The side of peace. The side of love. The side of true courage that follows the Way, the Truth, and the Life. The side that follows the Prince of Peace. It takes much more courage to say, "I won't fight you, my brother, because we are both flesh and blood. I will fight for you and for peace by loving you instead. Jesus said, 'I did not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them."
February 10, 2014
A balanced view of the Israeli Palestinian problem... Looks deep in what's happening in minds of people on both sides...
½ January 26, 2014
At least a solid 4 stars, more inclined to 4-1/2. It's tense and never boring. The movie is about a gifted Palestinian surgeon living in Tel Aviv who one day is operating on victims of a bomb attack in which 17 people die (many of them children) and he finds out the suicide bomber was his beloved wife. He has to find out why, what happened and how did he not know his own wife?
June 20, 2013
U ratu i ljubavi ne postoje granice.
½ July 16, 2013
Pomirljivost s nedokucivom istinom i misticnoscu drugih, koliko god bliski bili. Povrsinom jednostavan, ali kompleksnim temama dubok politicki triler.
December 30, 2013
First of all, let me say that I'm not a fan of the novel which "Ziad Doueiri" adopted. I knew Ziad in "West Beyrouth" and I loved his work, what is here is something trying to be so pacifist but in a shallow exposed agenda!

Violence and counter-violence is the main idea of this movie, to make us feel guilty in the war itself, apart of political lies of wrights and sh*tty stuff like that, but really I feel this was drifted in some ideology by reaching the end. The same impasse I saw in a similar movie at the same year 2012 "Inch'Allah" which directed by " Ana´s Barbeau-Lavalette". "The Attack" is the story of "Dr. Amin Jaafari" (Ali Suliman) an Arab surgeon living in Tel Aviv happily with her wife "Siham" (Reymond Amsalem), working successfully that he won a prize was given for the first time to an Arabic citizen in Israel. Dr. Jaafari was totally shocked after he was curing victims of a suicide process mostly of kids, when he discovered that his wife was the one who bombed herself! After this the story sinks in usual research about the origins of terrorism, and the impasse of losing trust, just things like that.

What is to admire for no doubt is the way Doueiri uses in shooting his scenes as he worked previously as a cameraman for "Quentin Tarantino", so he is great in capturing the locations and showing the difference between the life in Israel and Palestinian Authority, without any frills. Performances are good, specially "Ali Suliman" who carry the whole movie in his emotionally complicated role. Using flashback was boring for me, so I felt no thrilling.

Talking thematically is not easy without being in any side. I appreciate this work of Doueiri in digging deeply for secrets that divide us, or the mystery of giving up life for no certain "heaven". That's really sad. At last I quote from a friend of mine "War does not determine who is right. Only who is left..".
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