Divine Intervention

Critics Consensus

Suleiman utilizes absurdist humor to craft a provocative, original film.



Total Count: 69


Audience Score

User Ratings: 2,298
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Divine Intervention Photos

Movie Info

Director Elia Suleiman uses a mixture of romantic comedy and quirky humor to shed light on the problems of Palestinians in Yadon Ilaheyya (Divine Intervention). E.S. (Suleiman and his girlfriend Manal Khader), because they live in separate cities, must meet near an Israeli checkpoint. The film is little more than a series of usually comic but occasionally poignant scenes in which Suleiman and others must confront any number of Israeli nemeses. Suleiman's second film, Divine Interventions, was screened in competition at the 2002 Cannes Film Festival.

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Manal Khader
as The Woman
George Ibrahim
as Santa Clause
George Khleifi
as Jerusalem Neighbor
Avi Kleinberger
as Trainer & Tax Collector
Saiman Natour
as Uncle's Friend
Menashe Noy
as Soldier on Checkpoint
Lufuf Nuweiser
as Neighbor with American Van
Read Masarweh
as Abu Basil
Bassem Loulou
as Abu Amer
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Critic Reviews for Divine Intervention

All Critics (69) | Top Critics (21) | Fresh (56) | Rotten (13)

  • The visual puns, sight gags and the little parables told by the few speaking characters are rarely laugh-out-loud funny. But they provoke thought, debate and diverse interpretations.

    Jun 20, 2003 | Rating: 4/5
  • It makes for an intriguing example of how to use art, rather than bombs, to make a sustained political point.

    May 8, 2003 | Rating: B | Full Review…
  • Simmering, sharply observed work.

    Apr 25, 2003 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

    Ty Burr

    Boston Globe
    Top Critic
  • Suleiman's argument seems to be that the situation between Palestinians and Israelis has settled into an hopeless stalemate, in which everyday life incorporates elements of paranoia, resentment and craziness.

    Apr 25, 2003 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • A film whose eerie blend of deadpan wit and inner angst upset all your expectations.

    Apr 24, 2003 | Rating: 3.5/4
  • A pleasant surprise.

    Apr 4, 2003 | Rating: 3/4

Audience Reviews for Divine Intervention

  • Jan 03, 2010
    A thoughtful well paced drama with comedic bits outlining a very personal and tortured relationship between Palestinians at the wrong side of a checkpoint.
    John B Super Reviewer
  • Aug 27, 2008
    Art drenched in mythological symbols,yes?Most certainly,and poesie is included on the humanitarian cycle.Suleiman inherits the Tati syndrome and with a few Keaton persona strife,the facial expression reflects the round-up of his marvelous essence.Divine Intervention is a groundbreaking achievement,Kaurismaki must be jealous not for the political satire but for the deadpan environment!!!
    Dimitris S Super Reviewer
  • Apr 16, 2007
    Very strange film! It could be consider a drama because of the Palestine and Israel conflict. But could be seen as a comedy because of some very unexpected moments. The love story really makes you think about what real love is. Overall, it is very original and bold!
    Linda K Super Reviewer

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