Saturday, August 29, 2015

Occupation is comical in ZERO MOTIVATION

ZERO MOTIVATION (dir. Talya Lavie, 2014) is a episodic comedy-drama film about a unit of female office administration troops serving in the IDF. The film opens with a suicide on the base by a girl who impersonates a soldier, then continues on its merry way with hijinks in the dessert. The film is similar to the Robert Altman MASH film but with a modern feminist twist. Lavie said this in an interview about her previous short film THE SUBSTITUTE, which served as the basis for this film:
Q: Do you think your film is political?TL: I think that it’s indirectly political. Through a story that doesn’t touch the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in any way, we get a glimpse of the place where decisions affecting human life are made by people too young, sometimes unable to comprehend the extent of the responsibility on their shoulders. This, as well as cases of different sorts, can lead to tragic consequences.
This is a film that makes no reference to the Palestinians but for one scene where there is mention of 'an incident' that breaks up an office party. The invisible Other is given the same level of respect as Native Americans in the American Westerns. This is a method of justifying occupation via simply avoiding the topic.

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