"World Cinema: Israel"

My book, "World Cinema: Israel" (originally published in 1996) is available from Amazon on "Kindle", with an in-depth chapter comparing and analyzing internationally acclaimed Israeli films up to 2010.

Want to see some of the best films of recent years? Just scroll down to "best films" to find listings of my recommendations.


Sunday, November 22, 2015

The Female Perspective

Women in Sink (aka The Shampoo Summit) is a documentary film about women in Haifa.  In a particularly creative move, filmmaker Iris Zaki takes her camera and connects it to a metal pipe in front of the women as they are having their hair shampooed in a salon.   

The filmmaker has chosen a fascinating way to get women talking -- by catching them at Fifi's Salon in an Arab neighborhood in Haifa. Here, the women talk about love, politics, children, and more.   The result is an insightful and honest short documentary film about contemporary Israeli society.  
The multi-ethnic clientele tell wonderful stories, as Iris washes their hair and interviews them in this particularly intimate and vulnerable female setting.  One woman talks about her mother who was born and brought up Jewish and married her father, a Christian Arab.  Some of her siblings consider themselves Jewish but she is a believing Christian.  The hair stylist is a Christian Arab woman and she feels that she belongs here.  In fact, her daughter served in the army and matured a lot as a result of that experience.  Another woman talks about the deterioration in relations between Christians and Muslims today, especially in Nazareth.  Another talks about the empathy and sensitivity of women.  If only political matters were in the hands of women, then things might be different!

Iris Zaki plays multiple roles in this film -- film director, producer, investigative reporter and shampoo assistant.  She concludes that there is something special in the friendship and acceptance between women and she says it gives her hope. 

Women in Sink was the winner of two big awards -- best short doc at Haifa Film Festival last month and special jury award at Karlovy Vary. The film ( documentary) is available from Go2Films
A shorter version, The Shampoo Summit, is also available.

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