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The Big Sick

Filed in Film by on February 10, 2018 0 Comments
The Big Sick

Interracial dating, an increasingly common phenomenon in Western societies, is the subject of Michael Showalter’s romantic comedy, The Big Sick. It’s about the on-again, off-again relationship between a Pakistani American standup comedian and an Anglo postgraduate student. Kumail Nanjiani, playing himself, meets Emily Gardner (Zoe Kazan) in a  comedy nightclub one night. In a clever […]

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A Classic War Film

Filed in Film by on February 9, 2018 0 Comments
A Classic War Film

There are only a handful of movies I would bother watching again, and Das Boot (The Boat), a German-language war film released in 1981, qualifies as one. I caught it on the Netflix streaming network the other night, and it was as thrilling, gripping and spine-tingling as I remembered it 37 years ago. Wolfgang Petersen’s […]

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Israel Laboring Under An Illusion

Filed in Middle East by on February 8, 2018 0 Comments
Israel Laboring Under An Illusion

Without divulging names, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has let it be known that Israel has established informal and unofficial bilateral relations with Sunni Arab regimes fearful of Iran’s growing influence in the Middle East, particularly in Syria and Lebanon. It’s no big secret that Saudi Arabia, an oil-rich conservative ally of the United States, […]

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In Between — An Israeli Arab Movie

Filed in Film by on February 7, 2018 0 Comments
In Between — An Israeli Arab Movie

Maysaloun Hamoud’s debut feature film, In Between, examines the Arab minority in Israel through the eyes of three young Israeli Arab women living in the world’s first all-Jewish city, Tel Aviv. It  opens in Vancouver on February 9, in Toronto on February 16 and in Ottawa on April 6. Laila (Mouna Hawa), Salma (Sana Jammelieh) […]

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Words of Wisdom From Germany

Filed in Commentary by on February 5, 2018 0 Comments
Words of Wisdom From Germany

Words of wisdom from two German politicians: During his most recent trip to Israel, German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel made a number of observations that Israelis would do well to seriously consider. Speaking of the possibility of a two-state solution, which Germany strongly backs but which the current Israeli government appears to have abandoned, he […]

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The Shape of Water

Filed in Film by on February 4, 2018 0 Comments
The Shape of Water

The ordinary and the extraordinary converge seamlessly in Guillermo Del Toro’s artful fantasy, The Shape of Water. The British actress Sally Hawkins stars as a mute night cleaner who falls in love with a mythical amphibian thing who was dragged out of the muck of the Amazon rainforest. Hawkins’ character, Eliza Esposito, works in a top-secret […]

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Charles Maurras — Persona Non-Grata

Filed in Commentary by on February 3, 2018 0 Comments
Charles Maurras — Persona Non-Grata

This year’s edition of National Commemorations, a French publication which pays tribute to notable figures and noteworthy events, mentioned the 150th anniversary of the birth of Charles Maurras (1868-1952), a notorious antisemite. To no one’s surprise, his inclusion in the newsletter caused indignation and consternation. As Frederic Potier, the head of a French government panel […]

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A Fantastic Woman

Filed in Film by on February 2, 2018 0 Comments
A Fantastic Woman

The complexities of a non-traditional romantic relationship are laid bare in Sebastian Lelio’s sensitive Spanish-language drama, A Fantastic Woman, which opens in Canada on February 9. Chilean actor Daniela Vega plays Marina Vidal, a trans-woman who’s been thrown into grief and mourning following the sudden death of her boyfriend, Orlando Onetto (Francisco Reyes). Orlando, 57, […]

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Cycling In Tel Aviv

Filed in Travel by on February 1, 2018 0 Comments
Cycling In Tel Aviv

Tel Aviv, a cosmopolitan, fun-loving Mediterranean city, has discovered something new but old — cycling. In the past decade, cycling has become all the rage among Tel Avivians. The increasing popularity of cycling here coincides with the introduction of a bike rental program launched by the municipality in 2011. Cycling is now regarded as chic, […]

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Trump’s “Ultimate Deal” Is Still-Born

Filed in Middle East by on January 31, 2018 0 Comments
Trump’s “Ultimate Deal” Is Still-Born

Last May, following talks with Palestine Authority President Mahmoud Abbas at the White House, U.S. President Donald Trump pledged to resurrect peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians to achieve what he boldly described as the “ultimate deal.” In a sweeping observation, Trump boasted, “It’s something, frankly, maybe not as difficult as people have thought over […]

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