Beaufort

Beaufort

Beaufort

  The Crusader castle of Beaufort in Southern Lebanon is at the center of the homonymous film by Israeli director Joseph Cedar. Since the Israeli army in a controversial military action the southern part of the States 1982 Cedar occupy blowing the flag with the David Stern of the medieval fortress, which has already weathered many a storm in its centuries-long history. But now it’s not blowing the armies of Saladin, the attack on the former stronghold of the Crusaders, but the Israeli army used the old walls, upgraded by several bunkers and communications facilities to curb the activities of Hezbollah fighters near the Israeli border. But the enemy is invisible, excluded any direct confrontation, and so the soldiers feel the presence of the enemy only camouflaged mines on the road and the bombardment by rockets. Otherwise they are left entirely to themselves – an outpost in an occupied country.

The movie begins with the arrival of a young and friendly explosives expert to defuse a carefully camouflaged mine on the edge of the only road. The removal of the explosive device is therefore especially important because of the impending withdrawal of Israeli forces from Lebanon, and hence the evacuation of Beaufort, in those days of 2000 immediately. However, the defusing goes wrong, the bomb expert dies, the young garrison commander Lieutenant Liraz Liberti (Oshri Cohen) and his men are shocked. Again and again it comes to rocket attacks on the fortress by the fighters of Hezbollah, but to take action against the attacker does not come into question, the men are sentenced to sit around and wait for the evacuation order, which, however, fails even initially. Between boredom and danger of death, longing and the dream of a normal life in peace, they are waiting for the big day on which they can finally return home. When the retreat is postponed again and again, Liraz is faced with a dilemma: On one hand he has to fulfill his duty to the other, he has a responsibility for his men who are no longer needed here. In addition, the fortress that is the men has long been home to be blown into the air during the evacuation, a plan that brings in all men strange feelings. But then it is finally ready to begin the withdrawal …

Beaufort is a carefully staged and moving anti-war film, which holds to an excellent start, the balance between quiet passages and fight scenes, and so a realistic and sobering picture the first campaign in Lebanon is characterized. However, it failed, the director Joseph Cedar, Israel’s Lebanon policy are clearly in question. Not the war itself is bad, but the way how it is managed, it could bring the message of the film to the point. This is for all his enthusiasm for this haunting, if somewhat long movie but then a small downside. That such a clear stance has always been kept up to date, shows a small fringe episode from the production process: A few days after the end of filming in the summer of 2006, the Israeli army invaded Lebanon again in a – the story continues …

( Joachim Kurz)

Title: Beaufort Country of production: Israel Year of production: 2007 Length: 120 (Min)

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