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

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

After the thunderous reception for J.J. Abrams' Episode VII: The Force Awakens two years ago,...

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Like the 2015 original, this comedy plays merrily with cliches to tell a silly story...

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

There's a somewhat contrived jauntiness to this blending of fact and fiction that may leave...

Ferdinand Movie Review

Ferdinand Movie Review

This animated comedy adventure is based on the beloved children's book, which was published in...

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Director Dave McCary makes a superb feature debut with this offbeat black comedy, which explores...

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

A dramatisation of the real-life clash between tennis icons Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs,...

Shot Caller Movie Review

Shot Caller Movie Review

There isn't much subtlety to this prison thriller, but it's edgy enough to hold the...

Advertisement
The Disaster Artist Movie Review

The Disaster Artist Movie Review

A hilariously outrageous story based on real events, this film recounts the making of the...

Stronger Movie Review

Stronger Movie Review

Based on a true story about the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, this looks like one...

Only the Brave Movie Review

Only the Brave Movie Review

Based on a genuinely moving true story, this film undercuts the realism by pushing its...

Wonder Movie Review

Wonder Movie Review

This film may be based on RJ Palacio's fictional bestseller, but it approaches its story...

Happy End  Movie Review

Happy End Movie Review

Austrian auteur Michael Haneke isn't known for his light touch, but rather for hard-hitting, award-winning...

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Seemingly from out of nowhere, this film generates perhaps the biggest smile of any movie...

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

A Victorian thriller with rather heavy echoes of Jack the Ripper, this film struggles to...

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.