- Eytan Fox
- Reviewed by
- José Ruiloba a.k.a. Morris
- Review date
- Wednesday, September 03, 2008
Noam (Ohad Knoller) serves one month in the Israeli reserve forces and that’s where he meets Ashraf (Yousef ‘Joe’ Sweid), a Palestinian. Through a series of circumstances Ashraf ends up in Noam’s Tel-Aviv apartment, which he shares with his best friends Lulu (Daniella Wircer) and Yelli (Alon Friedman), and they soon start a romance amidst all the political implications it conveys.
Eytan Fox directed from a screenplay he wrote along with Gal Uchovsky. When I first read the movie’s premise I though it would be a serious, dense political movie and that couldn’t be farther from the truth (until the end, that is, but more on that later). I can’t say The Bubble is lighthearted, but its relaxed approach makes it more accessible and to the point, portraying the stories of these four free-spirited individuals as they go through their everyday lives with a heavy backdrop full of violence and injustice. The fact that the central characters are gay takes a backseat to the seriousness of the situation regarding what their countries, which are enemies, are going through, and how they cope with it.
As is always the case with movies that come from countries whose movie production is not widely seen in this side of the world, there’s also the fascinating aspect of learning about another culture, in this case both Israeli and Palestinian; and even more so when both come together and are looked through the eyes of young people. The details in their everyday life, their traditions, their behaviors, it’s all something to savor.
Fox goes way overboard with the political message he wants to give (a strong one at that) as his movie not only becomes overlong but ends with a stupefying sequence which betrays all sorts of character logic and which I didn’t believe for a second. I would’ve rather seen the movie end at the beach party segment, but there’s still a lot more to go from there and the change is so in-your-face it becomes almost like a prologue that needed much more fine-tuning. I don’t necessarily need a happy ending, but it’s a pity how it turned out at the end; I’m certainly going to stay with what preceded it.
The actors are all extraordinary. The woman in the bunch, Daniella Wircer, is a real find. I hope she’s able to capitalize on her talent and looks because she’s a star in my eyes. The guys are no less impressive, with Yousef ‘Joe’ Sweid delivering a sad and intense portrayal which is difficult to rub off, while Ohan Knoller and Alon Friedman both deliver solid performances.
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