The Cathy and Morris Bart Jewish Cultural Arts Series
Tel Aviv on Fire
Tel Aviv on Fire sounds like it could be a disaster film, or perhaps an adventure, or maybe some sort of issue-oriented documentary. The one thing you don’t expect it to be is a laugh-out-loud comedy. Arab-Israeli director Sameh Zoabi has found a way to bring a chuckle and sigh to a story about checkpoints, occupation and unhappy neighbors. Salam, an inexperienced young Palestinian man, becomes a writer on a popular soap opera after a chance meeting with an Israeli soldier. Tel Aviv on Fire is the name of the pro-Arab soap opera set in the build up to the 1967 war, a TV show that both Israelis and Palestinians watch and anticipate the ending. The film has been able to show comedy in the lives of regular people living in a bizarre situation.