To evolve toward peace—all must be present in the conversation.
After viewing any high quality and thought-provoking documentary, I am often left thinking about how much passion went into its creation and how that passion can inspire others to work toward change.
Undoubtedly, I reflected on these same thoughts after watching 5 Broken Cameras, a documentary that focuses on the organized nonviolent movement that includes Palestinians, Israeli and international activists in the village of Bil’in, a Palestinian village located in the central West Bank.
The film is co-directed by Palestinian cameraman and farmer Emad Burnat and Israeli filmmaker Guy Davidi. It allows the viewer a glimpse of life in Bil’in, home to Burnat, who has captured the struggles through the lens of his cameras—five cameras—over a span of six years.
Through each of his cameras, we are given a unique opportunity to view life in Bil’in—Burnat’s world—up close and personal.
If you were looking for extensive commentary or solutions, you will not find either in this film. Instead, you are left to witness and draw your own conclusions, feel whatever is natural for you to feel—and that is what makes the film so powerful and allows it to serve as the perfect catalyst for enlightened discourse among people with many differing positions.
No longer in theaters, and the Academy Awards are over, this film still continues to breathe life into a movement based in understanding through civic dialogue.
The film received a well-deserved nomination at the 2013 Academy Awards and has been well received internationally, but that is just the beginning. There is a push for it to be approved by the Israeli Department of Ministry for use in their cultural program, and getting that acceptance is now a main focus of the continued activism associated with 5 Broken Cameras.
Everyone can agree that the youth are the future, which makes the Israeli youth a targeted audience for this film.
Why is it so important that this film be shown to Israeli youth?
This question is best answered by viewing the short video below that shows a screening of the film to a group of Israeli students. Their reaction is overwhelming—see for yourself.
The film has not been without controversy. There has been backlash and now the directors even face charges. Many who fear change desperately cling to what they know, what feels comfortable and resist anything that calls into question their hardened positions, opinions and beliefs. We can only hope that those dedicated to peace and the evolution of humanity, from all sides of this issue, will remain steadfast and prevail and that long-term solutions will manifest sooner rather than later.
Wendy Keslick is a massage therapist and yoga instructor. Her spiritual journey includes yoga, her devotion to Rosicrucian AMORC studies and being part of the conversation of our evolving humanity. Borderline obsessions include organic and natural living, vegetarianism and veganism, social justice issues, documentaries and current events. She is determined to learn Arabic in this lifetime. Her daughter, international travel, exploring other cultures and green smoothies are her passions.
She also founded a nonprofit called Children Creating Bridges. Volunteering for this organization has taken her to Syria to be part of three medical delegations to help with the Iraqi refugee crisis. Follow her on Facebook.
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Ed: Brianna Bemel