With an uneasy beauty and a blistering moral force, Innocence explores the militarization of Israeli society and its impact on the lives of its young people, most of whom are conscripted into the army. Through intimate narration taken from the diaries of dead recruits and the rare home movies they left behind, the film reveals the inner turmoil of the soldiers, while also depicting the insidious and widespread ways in which children are indoctrinated into the culture of war at an early age. Filmmaker Guy Davidi, who co-directed with Emad Burnat the seminal Oscar-nominated Palestinian-Israel co-production Five Broken Cameras, creates another essential and emotional portrait of the personal devastation caused by war and the guileless victims left in its wake.
Screenings & Events
Sun, Oct 16 @ 4:45pm CDT
at AMC River East, Screen 4
Tue, Oct 18 @ 6:00pm CDT
at Gene Siskel Film Center
Available to stream Oct 13 @ 12:00pm CT through Oct 23 @ 11:59pm CT for a 48-hour watch window. Available in Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin only.
- Sigrid Dyekjær, Hilla Medalia. Co-Producers: Kaarle Aho, Margreth Jonasdottir
- Guy Davidi
- Guy Davidi, Maja Friis
- Guy Davidi, Avner Shahaf
- Rinat Klain, Dorit Hassel
- Heikki Kossi
- Snorri Hallgrímsson
- Danish Documentary, Medalia Productions.
- Co-Production companies: Real Lava, Making Movies, Sagafilm
Let It Be Morning Vayehi Boker
When Sami returns with his wife and son to his Arabic village for his brother’s wedding, he plans a quick return to Jerusalem, where his business and mistress await. Just as he is leaving, the village is unexpectedly put under lockdown by Israeli soldiers, and Sami finds himself caught in an uneasy web of personal and political intrigues. This adaptation of Sayed Kashua’s 2006 novel mixes wry comedy with a touch of the absurd to create a perceptive, winsome satire.
Screenings & Events
Wed, Aug 24 @ 6:30pm CDT
at Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E Washington St, Chicago
Free tickets available to claim starting August 8 or available at the door (subject to availability). Walk-up tickets will be available at the door starting 15 minutes before the start of the screening if open seating remains.
Post-screening discussion presented by:
This perceptive documentary follows 12-year-old Idan, a talented young athlete anticipating his Bar Mitzvah. More than a rite of passage, it represents the first time the boy will meet his African father, Tony Toklomati, a professional soccer player removed from the country for lying about his age. But will the family raise enough money to pay his way to Israel, and how long will he be able to stay?
Livestream Filmmaker Q&A:
With director Maya Zinshtein, producer Abie Troen, and Yael Eckstein, President of the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews
Emmy-winning Israeli filmmaker Maya Zinshtein (Forever Pure) returns to the Festival with this riveting exposé that investigates the unlikely connection between Jews and evangelical Christians in the U.S. and Israel, and the startling hypocrisy at its core. From conversations with a devout pastor and his congregation in rural Kentucky to meetings with religious leaders in Washington D.C. and Israel, Zinshtein closely follows Chicago native Yael Eckstein, President and CEO of the influential advocacy group the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, in her fundraising and coalition-building efforts. What she uncovers is a shocking alliance rooted in apocalyptic prophecy and driven in unprecedented ways by Donald Trump’s White House.
Documentary Program Sponsor
Women in Cinema Program Sponsor
John and Jacolyn Bucksbaum Family Foundation
Livestream Filmmaker Q&A:
With director Yoav Shamir
Founded in the 1970s by Frenchman Claude Vorilhon (a.k.a Raël), the International Raëlian Movement is a quasi-religious cult built on the idea that aliens created the human race. When acclaimed Israeli director Yoav Shamir (Checkpoint) is invited by the charismatic Raël to chronicle his followers’ colorful ways of life and meet free-spirited members across the globe, the director finds more questions than answers: Is Raël a modern-day prophet or a scam artist? And even if Raëlism is bunk, is it really so different from other religions? This funny and fascinating documentary examines the complexities of belief and devotion in ways both unexpected and enlightening.
“The Prophet is enlivened by Shamir’s warm rapport with the gentle, unassuming Rael, who seems relatively level-headed — except, of course, for his strange anecdotes about being picked up by extra-terrestrials”