The Gatekeepers - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Gatekeepers Reviews

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David Thomson
The New Republic
June 13, 2013
There is a powerful moment in [the film] when Diskin, head of the Shin Bet from 2005 to 2011, candidly remarks that for the Palestinians he is himself a terrorist. That is not relativism but realism, and the welcome sign of an empathetic imagination.
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Tom Long
Detroit News
March 22, 2013
The film and its talking head participants paint the picture in both broad strokes and fine detail.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
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Tom Keogh
Seattle Times
March 14, 2013
Whatever one's political stripe regarding Israel, it's hard to dispute the impressions and perspective of the film's six eyewitnesses.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
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Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
March 8, 2013
The level of candor here may not satisfy hard-liners of either stripe, but it can help viewers begin to formulate new questions about the philosophical, strategic and moral challenges of conflict, in particular "wars on terror."
| Original Score: 3.5/4
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Ben Sachs
Chicago Reader
March 8, 2013
Ultimately the movie feels evasive, and its flashy, digitally animated re-creations of military surveillance footage unpleasantly evoke the Call of Duty video games.
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Claudia Puig
USA Today
March 7, 2013
It offers startlingly honest insight into the Israeli-Palestinian conflict from some of those who called the shots.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Rick Groen
Globe and Mail
March 1, 2013
As a political testament, the result is revealing and important.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Peter Howell
Toronto Star
March 1, 2013
A monolith crumbles in The Gatekeepers, and it's a sight to inspire awe.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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Steven Rea
Philadelphia Inquirer
February 28, 2013
As a clear-eyed examination of a conflict that seems to have no end, The Gatekeepers is powerful, provocative stuff.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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John Anderson
Newsday
February 28, 2013
A remarkable character study.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
February 28, 2013
"The Gatekeepers" is a triumph of storytelling, a revealing view into the intricate shadow worlds of international espionage.
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Bill Goodykoontz
Arizona Republic
February 28, 2013
Moreh conducts a kind of primer in the organization's history, which is, in its own way, a history of modern Israel. It's fascinating.
Full Review | Original Score: 4.5/5
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Ty Burr
Boston Globe
February 28, 2013
If for no other reason, it deserves to be seen for arranging decades of events in the Middle East into a chronology that, to an outsider, makes dreadful sense.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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Ann Hornaday
Washington Post
February 22, 2013
A sobering but welcome dose of honesty regarding issues and events that have otherwise been shrouded in secrecy and overheated rhetoric.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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Mick LaSalle
San Francisco Chronicle
February 21, 2013
Israelis, generally speaking, tend to be tough, but the men who've commanded Shin Bet, Israel's secret service, are in a whole other category.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
February 21, 2013
A lesser filmmaker might've been tripped up by such a narrow focus. A lesser filmmaker might've misjudged the melange of archival footage, fabricated surveillance footage and talking heads, which Moreh handles with a blend of cinematic flash and tact.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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Omer Mozaffar
Chicago Sun-Times
February 21, 2013
The film makes explicit and implicit endorsements. The strategy of vengeance and overkill is ineffective and leads Israel to horrific behavior described only through metaphor.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/4
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Ian Buckwalter
The Atlantic
February 7, 2013
The subjects' openness is refreshing - and sometimes frightening.
Full Review | Original Score: 9.5/10
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Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
February 6, 2013
A feat - of access and of passionate and appropriately unsettling political commentary.
Full Review | Original Score: A
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Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
February 2, 2013
The Gatekeepers cuts deeper than any political thriller. It's a powerhouse.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Peter Rainer
Christian Science Monitor
February 1, 2013
It's an eye-opener.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
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Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
January 31, 2013
The Israeli journalist Dror Moreh has hit a documentarian's trifecta with "The Gatekeepers."
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Scott Tobias
AV Club
January 31, 2013
The Gatekeepers serves as a terrifying oracle, with Israel forevermore a powder keg waiting to go off.
Full Review | Original Score: A-
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Michelle Orange
Village Voice
January 29, 2013
[A] searching, engrossing, and stylish inquiry ...
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Joshua Rothkopf
Time Out
January 29, 2013
You'll be arguing with your friends about the ethics of secrecy and defense for hours; that's what makes these exit interviews so essential.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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David Edelstein
New York Magazine/Vulture
January 28, 2013
The Gatekeepers doesn't play like agitprop. The storytelling is strong, the images stark.
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Justin Chang
Variety
December 18, 2012
The brutal recent history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is rivetingly recounted by some of its most prominent players in The Gatekeepers.
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Joe Neumaier
New York Daily News
November 29, 2012
Their honest assessments shed light on issues that continue to reverberate.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
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Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
November 26, 2012
Moreh's reporting is impressive, built on those extensive interviews and some startling footage, from wartime newsreels to bomb-site views of quickly exploding targets.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
November 26, 2012
A documentary potent enough to alter how you see the world.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/5
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A.O. Scott
New York Times
November 25, 2012
It is hard to imagine a movie about the Middle East that could be more timely, more painfully urgent, more challenging to conventional wisdom on all sides of the conflict.
| Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Farran Smith Nehme
New York Post
November 21, 2012
The filmmaker doesn't speculate about why these men are talking, but he leaves you with an excellent guess.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4