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Wrestling Jerusalem 2016


Distributed by Tugg, Inc., 855-321-8844
Produced by Dylan Kussman
Directed by Aaron Davidman and Dylan Kussman
DVD, color, 88 min.

College - General Adult
Arab-Israeli Conflict, Middle East, Theatre

Date Entered: 10/10/2017

Reviewed by Lara Herzellah, Research and Information Literacy Librarian, Daniel A. Reed Library, State University of New York at Fredonia

Wrestling Jerusalem was originally written as a stage production, which explores the stories of 17 characters living throughout Israel and Palestine. The characters are portrayed by one man, Aaron Davidman, who through dialogue with himself and the audience, relays the complicated issues surrounding the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. The production of the film itself is very sparse with scenes taking place on an empty stage, in a backstage dressing room and in the desert.

Although the stories and the scenes were compelling, I did feel it was a bit lackluster. I believe a stage production of the material would provide more of an impact than the film version does as I feel the film tried to use the extra backdrops as an opportunity to portray extra drama but instead, it detracts from the material. I also found it a bit unsettling that a single Jewish man was telling the stories of both the Israelis and the Palestinians. I would have much preferred to hear the voices of these sides presented by representatives from those two sides. However, I still recommend this film for any academic library, as it provides high quality content on a divisive topic.