The Time That Remains

"Good"

The Time That Remains Review


This collection of vignettes tracing the aftermath of Israel's creation in 1948 is deeply personal and often surprisingly funny. But it's so specific and artful that it's also rather impossible for non-Israelis to understand.

When Israel "liberates" Nazareth, one Arab family quietly stands firm. Young husband Fuad (Bakri) makes guns as part of the resistance and is constantly harassed by Jewish militia, while his wife (Qudha Tanus, then Bajjali) tries to make life as normal as possible for their young son Elia (Hanna, Espanioli, then Suleiman). Over the years the situation changes, but their home remains constant, as do their colourful neighbours. And for every act of violence, there are at least five absurd events that keep things in perspective.

The film is made up of scenes from 1948 to the present with echoing themes and characters but no over-arching storyline. As a result, the movie never builds much momentum, although it would certainly resonate strongly for those familiar with the situation. For the rest of us, most references are obscure (if that), and many of the clearly symbolic elements remain elusive. So it feels somewhat random in its scattershot approach as it meanders through scenes that repeat or echo each other like poetry.

Some of these sequences have real power, such as when a tank follows a man as he empties his bins while talking on his mobile phone, or when armed police try to disperse a Ramallah rave. Repeated scenes in which a neighbour douses himself with petrol then tries to light it, or when patrolling soldiers harass two night fishermen, have tense subtext even though the film maintains a slapstick tone through the black humour and disturbing violence.

In the later scenes when Suleiman plays himself, he adds a Chaplinesque quality. This has been there all along but becomes more noticeable through this middle-aged man's passive, curious stare. This style of performance (and filmmaking) extends right through the movie, given the whole thing a period feel. Even if it never quite comes together for most audiences, the film has historical value as Suleiman beautifully depicts these momentous events as seen through his own childhood eyes.



Facts and Figures

Genre: Foreign

Run time: 109 mins

In Theaters: Wednesday 12th August 2009

Box Office USA: $31.8k

Box Office Worldwide: $753.8 thousand

Budget: $6.5M

Distributed by: IFC Films

Production compaines: France 3 Cinéma, nazira, Nazira

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 84%
Fresh: 37 Rotten: 7

IMDB: 7.1 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer: Michael Gentile,

Starring: Ali Suliman as Eliza's Boyfriend, as Eliza, Saleh Bakri as Fuad, Avi Kleinberger as Government Official, Doraid Liddawi as Ramalla IDF officer, Amer Hlehel as Anis, Nati Ravitz as IDF Commander

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Colossal Movie Review

Colossal Movie Review

It's rare to find a movie that so defiantly refuses to be put into a...

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

It's unlikely that Guy Ritchie could make a boring movie if he wanted to. This...

Snatched Movie Review

Snatched Movie Review

It doesn't really matter that the script for this lively action-comedy is paper thin: teaming...

Jawbone Movie Review

Jawbone Movie Review

Boxing movies aren't usually this thoughtful. Sure, there are plenty of punchy moments in the...

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Scottish filmmaker Gillies MacKinnon (Hideous Kinky) remakes the 1949 Ealing comedy classic, although it's difficult...

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Master filmmaker Ridley Scott is back to continue the story 10 years after the events...

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

A fictionalised account of real events, this drama is reminiscent of Peter Morgan's work in...

Advertisement
Sleepless Movie Review

Sleepless Movie Review

In remaking the 2011 French thriller Sleepless Night, the filmmakers have dumbed down both the...

Unlocked Movie Review

Unlocked Movie Review

By injecting a steady sense of fun, this slick but mindless action thriller both holds...

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

A seriously impressive feature directing debut with a star-making central performance, this period British drama...

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

It was never going to be easy to match the impact of 2014's Guardians of...

The Promise Movie Review

The Promise Movie Review

The director of Hotel Rwanda, Terry George, turns to another humanitarian horror: the systematic murder...

Their Finest Movie Review

Their Finest Movie Review

Skilfully written, directed and acted, this offbeat British period film tells a story that catches...

Unforgettable Movie Review

Unforgettable Movie Review

With heavy echoes of trashy thrillers like Fatal Attraction, this movie overcomes its painfully simplistic...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.