5 Broken Cameras

5 Broken Cameras (2011), Directors: Emad Burnat, Guy Davidi

The five broken cameras referred to in the title each belong to Emad Burnat, a Palestinian whose village has been under threat and virtual military occupation from the illegal encroachments of Jewish Zionists. This shocking and compelling documentary details the struggles of Emad’s village against illegal Jewish settlers, their conflicts and prolonged suffering which include almost daily battles with Israeli armed forces and frequent detainment of the inhabitants without charge. His cameras which he uses to document the conflict are one-by-one destroyed, with one even saving Emad’s life from an Israeli bullet. It’s continually harrowing, but Emad and his villager’s resilience is enchanting and infinitely inspirational in the face of such ceaseless intimidation and free violation of their human rights. It exists as an essential document for the daily suffering of the Palestinian people but it also alive with humanity and a somewhat soothing humility, as the purchase of Emad’s first camera coincides with the birth of his son, Gibreel. As his son grows, we are afforded a glimpse of the conditions children are expected to grow up in and how conflict affects a child’s development. A deeply moving watch which has affected not only much of the world but has also helped to enlighten Israeli youth to their countries aggressive exploits against innocent people.  


Rushmore (1998), Director: Wes Anderson

Anderson’s second feature-length outing sees him cementing his truly unique visual style of slightly heightened reality and three-dimensional character portraits. In a stylistic manner totally divorced from the standard Hollywood tropes, Anderson lovingly expounds upon the tale of a precocious fifteen year-old by the name of Max Fischer, played to consummate perfection by a young Jason Schwartzman. A busy-body by anyone’s standards, Max is the president of every extra-curricular activity and a constant thorn in the side of his school’s exasperated Principal. The introduction of an attractive new teacher (Olivia Williams) who courts Max’s affections ushers in his fall from grace as he turns against his friends, including a wealthy industrialist played with succinct apathy by the ever brilliant Bill Murray. Witty and full of heart, Anderson has arguably never truly bettered this tale of incompatible love and youthful idealism.