We finally got a chance to watch the controversial film Munich last night with the Jameeds, Beisan, and another friend. After the movie each of us had a different opinion. We could not really agree on whether the movie was balanced or not. I personally thought the movie was very well-made and did a decent job portraying both sides of the bloody Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
I thought the movie’s message was targeted more towards Israelis, as it was highly critical of the actions of Mossad’s killing machine and the blind patriotism that exits amidst Israeli society. One particular quote that stood out was from Carl, a skeptical Mossad agent: "Israel was not created by being nice." Another quote of note was that from a trigger-happy Mossad agent who remarked that the only thing that matters to him is Jewish blood.
One thing I liked about the movie was that unlike many other Hollywood movies, Palestinians were portrayed as human and not just these blood-thirsty terrorists. They were shown as refined, highly cultured, and family-oriented. The film also questioned the involvement of the targeted Palestinians in the actual killing of Israeli athletes in Munich.
Blogger Angry Arab believes that the majority of those assassinated "had nothing to do with Munich" and that the movie failed miserably in showing their innocence. I tend to agree with Angry Arab that the alleged Palestinian involvement should have been dissected more thoroughly. Although the movie made sure to present the Palestinian side of the story, I thought it was shown a bit hastily and not given enough prominence. For someone unaware of the conflict, the Palestinian side of the story might not have been made clear enough.
The movie was also highly informative for me personally. One interesting bit was seeing Ehud Barak dressed as a woman while pursuing PLO fedayeen in Beirut. The movie’s final message: Violence breeds violence and tit-for-tat policies only result in more bloodshed. Overall, I thought the movie was very good and I’d give it a score of 8/10. Here are some reactions from the blogosphere: Angry Arab, Palforce, and Egyptian Sandmonkey.