The Schmooze

Robert de Niro and Christiane Amanpour Bring Arabs and Jews Together

The Tribeca Film Festival 2010 gathers pace. On Thursday night, at the Japan Society Queen Noor of Jordan and TFF founder Jane Rosenthal introduced the new film, “Budrus” (to be reviewed in next week’s Forward) from Julia Bacha and Justvision. That mixture of Jewish and Arab representation was the feature of an evening attended by TFF co-founder Robert de Niro.

A hard-won record of nonviolent demonstrations against the intrusion of the Israel security barrier into village land and culture, “Budrus” — about the village of the same name — is an extended appreciation of the complexities and difficulties of resistance to injustice. But, at the same time, it’s the story of an arab village defeating the IDF and saluting the victory with heartfelt “allahu akbar.”

The list of important Jewish sponsors of the film is impressive but not as impressive as the number of Jewish attendees of this North American premier. But they, like me, surely felt conflicted as they clapped the noble conclusion and the cast of Israelis and international protesters who supported Ayed Morrar, the leader of the Popular Committee Against the Wall in Budrus.

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Robert de Niro and Christiane Amanpour Bring Arabs and Jews Together

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