Route 181, a documentary and a debate
Posted by worriedlebanese on 15/12/2006
Route 181 is a three part documentary, shot and edited by Michel Khleifi & Eyal Sivan, two Israeli directors; one Christian (self-defined as Palestinian) and the other Jewish.
They chose to follow the border decided upon by the UN general assembly in its Resolution 181, to try to retrace it by filming the different villages and areas it went through, going from south to north.
During the screening on Wednesday, organised by the French association A’doc, only the third part was shown. The final part of the trilogy could be taken as a documentary of its own. The message is very clear, the build up interesting and the finale quite dramatic. It takes us to the Northern region of what the directors call Israel/Palestine.
This region was supposed to be divided into four areas: two Jewish and two Arab, but after the 1948 war, and after having been invaded by five armies (Lebanese, Syrian, Jordanian, Iraqi and Jewish), it was actually split into two parts: Galilea reunited under Jewish sovereignty and a much smaller region attached to the kingdom of Jordan as part of the West Bank.
The documentary’s point is to expose the absurdity of this division line that actually was never drawn and officially determined. It also underlines the violence that accompanied this demarcation, geographical and ethnic.
Eyal Sivan who was present at the screening discussed quite brilliantly his film, his approach, his views both as a documentarian and as an Israeli citizen.