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The concrete curtain by Brunner, Benny

Following on from his 2004 film The Wall, Brunners latest documentary focuses on the impact of Israel's expropriations for and construction of the West Bank wall as it encircles and carves apart integral parts of Palestinian East Jerusalem. Based on extended and intimate interviews with residents of Bethlehem and i>Abu Dis, the film shows how Palestinian daily life is affected by Israel's enforcement of new and unnatural geographic and jurisdictional realities imposed upon the historical capital and its residents.

Social Interest
What does it mean to be a refugee in your own backyard? To be separated from your family who live 300 feet away? 'The Concrete Curtain' showcases several people whose lives are intimately affected by the construction of Israel's separation border. Using footage of a woman's home that is literally in between the West Bank and Jerusalem, the film complicates the notion of borders and, in turn, illustrates further complexities of this historical conflict. Personalizing the political, 'The Concrete Curtain' explores the ways in which daily lives are ruptured, fragmented, and overturned in the blink of an eye.

Historic Interest
Israel's border with Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Egypt are all fenced. Israel also maintains two separation barriers between Israeli and Palestinian population centers with the stated intention of preventing infiltration by suicide bombers. During the 1950s and 1960s a fortified separation barrier also divided much of Jerusalem to separate Jordanian and Israeli-controlled sectors of the city. In March 2004, Israel and Jordan commenced a joint project to build a desert science centre on their shared border. They have taken down a stretch of the border fence between the Red and the Dead seas for the campus.

Historic Interest
For Palestinians it is the "Apartheid Wall," Israel calls it a terror prevention barrier. As the 'separation fence' is being built mainly on Palestinian land, it separates chiefly Palestinian villages from their sources of life. 'The concrete curtain' shows Palestinians who decry its adverse effects on their livelihood.

About the Producer
Benny Brunner is an Israeli-Dutch filmmaker based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Jewish and Israeli modern history, and inspiring individuals are the subject matters of his films. Brunner has written, directed, and produced documentary films internationally since mid-1980s. He does not believe in "objectivity" in documentary filmmaking, especially in times of conflict, when people are killed in the name of ideology. His political stand in the century old struggle between Arabs and Jews in Palestine-Israel is clearly reflected in his films.

Buy the DVD
Either send us an e-mail ( or contact Benny Brunner (Tel.               + 31 20 6277859

Brunner, Benny
Copyright Holder
Xela Films
52 min.
Year of release

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