Interestingly enough, I ordered this movie (netflix is my hero) because I misread another blog written by a friend of mine. In the body of the blog, he refers to this wonderful movie, Promises, and raves about it. I went to Netflix, looked for Promises and this came up. I didn't know anything about it except that I give credence to Chance's suggestions as he is a legitimate movie buff. After watching it last night, I couldn't believe this was one of Chance's favorite movies. It didn't seem to be a "Chance movie"...indeed, I was correct. While the body of the blog referes to Promises, the title refers to Eastern Promises.
Ah, that explains it. I neglected a key piece of information. Eastern Promises is a crime drama about the Russian Mafia. Promises is a documentary about the lives of children living within the Israeli-Palestinian conflict produced during the peaceful years of 1997-2000.
I'm glad I misread. Children are capable of explaining things in a very pure and superficial way at times. This makes it easy to understand, while at the same time experiencing the very real emotion (or lack thereof) that they deliver. While watching, I was struck by the simplicity of their answers to very complex situations. As a result of their youth, there was very little rationalization about the process and you are able to see the root of the conflict at its base-level. Two sets of people believe that God gave them the land in question. One set used to live there, one set lives there now. One group of people will do what they can to get it back, one group of people will do what they can to keep it. There is no compromise. There is no understanding further. They each look at the other with suspicion, and as I could best interpret, genuine hatred. Although, hatred through the eyes of a child is muted with not as much complication. It exists simple because it exists.
I think it left me with a deep sense of longing to do something as documentaries are wont to do. It also left me with the realization that there isn't much I can do. It seems that this is a problem that only God can fix as His "promise" is the center of the dispute. I mean, seriously, how do you rationalize over religion and the promises found within one?
Anyway, the word "complicated" was used a lot in the documentary. It certainly fits.
If you haven't seen this documentary, I would highly recommend it. Certainly, we are all aware of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but this gives it from the perspective of the children living within it and in spite of it. It's a strange beast to watch a child with radical beliefs spewing out of his or her mouth. It's even stranger to watch hopelessness from children.