Operation Filmmaker

Critics Consensus

Operation Filmmaker is a darkly funny, ironic tale of a cross-cultural exchange gone wrong.



Total Count: 33


Audience Score

User Ratings: 587
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Operation Filmmaker Photos

Movie Info

Touched by the plight of an aspiring Iraqi filmmaker whose dreams of working in Hollywood seemed to fall with Baghdad, American filmmaker Liev Schreiber invites the ambitious wannabe director to intern on Everything Is Illuminated, to unexpected results. In 2004, just one year after the United States launched a devastating attack on Baghdad, MTV ran a story about a 25-year-old Iraqi film student named Muthana Mohmed, who remained determined not to let the strife that consumed his country consume his dreams as well. At the time, American actor Schreiber was preparing to make his directorial debut with the film Everything Is Illuminated. After seeing the documentary on television, Schreiber was consumed by guilt for having so many amazing opportunities in the film industry and determined to give Mohmed the chance of a lifetime by inviting him to join the production of Everything Is Illuminated in the Czech Republic. Common wisdom dictates that "the road to hell is paved with good intentions," however, and as Mohmed attempted to balance the complications of living away from home for the first time with the cultural issues that arise while working with an all-American film crew, the situation quickly began to deteriorate.


Critic Reviews for Operation Filmmaker

All Critics (33) | Top Critics (15)

  • If learning about other cultures shows that we're all basically alike, Operation Filmmaker is a reminder that foreign countries have their own share of nitwits, too.

    Jul 25, 2008 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…
  • What might have been a vanity project emerges as a surprisingly complicated morality tale.

    Jun 30, 2008
  • Everyone here comes out smelling bad -- that's why the film's so good.

    Jun 20, 2008 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

    Ty Burr

    Boston Globe
    Top Critic
  • This gut punch of a documentary will knock you for a loop.

    Jun 13, 2008 | Rating: 3/4
  • An exit strategy in Iraq? This self-aware study shows how hard it'll be.

    Jun 6, 2008 | Rating: A- | Full Review…
  • The whole film could be seen a metaphor for America's misadventures in Iraq: Schreiber and company came in expecting flowers and sweets from a grateful native, and wound up in a quagmire.

    Jun 6, 2008 | Rating: B+

    Scott Tobias

    AV Club
    Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Operation Filmmaker

  • Apr 03, 2008
    Fascinating doc on a fledgling filmmaker squandering opportunity and stranded by global politics.
    William G Super Reviewer

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