Zaytoun - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Zaytoun Reviews

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Top Critic
John Oursler
Village Voice
September 17, 2013
By the end ... the director's ambivalence is overwhelming, obscuring an important story with undeniable modern parallels.
Tomas Hachard
Slant Magazine
September 15, 2013
It misfires in tone, depth, and political tact, dumbing down rather than providing new insights into the Israel-Palestine conflict.
Full Review | Original Score: .5/4
Andrew Lapin
The Dissolve
September 19, 2013
Though Dorff isn't the only thing wrong with Zaytoun, he is still its biggest liability, and the rare case where one miscast role ruins a film's essential premise.
Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/5
Shaun Munro
What Culture
October 14, 2012
A pedestrian script stifles a promising concept, in spite of solid performances.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
Brian Orndorf
October 24, 2013
The movie means well enough, yet Zaytoun doesn't do enough to upset expectations, trusting in the power of warm orchestral strings and softening demeanors to coax the viewer into a deceptive comfort zone.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Nigel Andrews
Financial Times
December 27, 2012
These characters never really existed, we feel, in any place/time except Wish Fulfilment Land.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Rich Cline
December 21, 2012
Lively characters and resonant interaction make this film enjoyably watchable even though it's impossible to believe anything that happens.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
Rich Cline
Shadows on the Wall
September 27, 2013
Lively characters and a series of offbeat events make this movie watchable, except that we never believe anything that happens.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
Top Critic
Jeannette Catsoulis
New York Times
September 19, 2013
In grabbing for the heart this one-size-fits-all fable sadly ignores the mind.
| Original Score: 2.5/5
Top Critic
Robert Abele
Los Angeles Times
September 26, 2013
It's just all too breezy to have any real effect.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Todd Jorgenson
September 30, 2013
... never strikes the right balance of comedy and melodrama, and winds up trivializing the plight of his characters in the process.
Philip French
Observer (UK)
December 30, 2012
A piece of ecumenical wish-fulfillment.
Tom Dawson
The List
December 20, 2012
The result feels dramatically and emotionally unconvincing, and a step backwards from Riklis's poignant allegory Lemon Tree.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
Walter V. Addiego
San Francisco Chronicle
October 17, 2013
It's probably best viewed as a fable that tries to strike a hopeful note amid the many woes of the Middle East, but the blunt filmmaking and the near-sentimentality make it hard to buy into.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Peter Bradshaw
December 27, 2012
The premise of this drama about a deal a Palestinian boy cuts with an Israeli pilot may be sweet, but it doesn't convince.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
David Fear
Time Out
September 17, 2013
Zaytoun wants to milk a historical moment as a plea for tolerance; its only accomplishment is to channel the forgettable foreign-film exotica of decades past.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
September 19, 2013
Congeniality isn't necessarily honesty ... and Riklis regularly fudges.
Jared Eisenstat
Film Comment Magazine
November 4, 2013
Zaytoun is relatively successful in tiptoeing through the political minefield of the subject matter, and it offers out the promise of hope and possibility without raising expectations.
Brian Pendreigh
Radio Times
December 27, 2012
El Akal delivers a winning wide-eyed performance as Fahed that more than compensates for [its] shortcomings.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Henry Fitzherbert
Daily Express (UK)
December 28, 2012
The storytelling may cleave a little too closely to Hollywood formula but the beautiful location work and performances add immeasurably to the authenticity.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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