HISTOIRES D’ISRAEL

(Stories about Israel)

53 minutes, 2017
Direction : William KAREL and Blanche FINGER (France)
Production : Roche Productions, Arte (France)

70 years after the Hebrew State was created, ten emblematic Israeli writers (including Amos Oz, David Grossman, Avraham B. Yehoshua) draw up a “state of the nation”: its values, its fears, its contradictions. The writers draw on the permanent tension in which they live as material for their work, which thus reflects all their country’s problems: the weight of the past, the Zionist project, the Palestinians, religion, the army, social tensions, territorial fractures. An original and subjective portrait of Israel, where literature helps us understand geopolitics.


William KAREL
was a photographer at the Gamma and Sygma agencies (1973-1983). A large part of his work is devoted to the history of the twentieth century. He specializes in showing the corridors of power and portraits of political figures (Barack Obama, George W. Bush, Margaret Thatcher, François Mitterrand, Nicolas Sarkozy) and cultural personalities (Philip Roth for the American Masters series of PBS). Since 1984, he has made some thirty documentaries on history, politics and culture, including many award winners. Among them: “François Mitterrand, que reste-t-il de nos amours ?” (2015), “Jusqu’au dernier. La destruction des Juifs d’Europe” (2014), “Album(s) d’Auschwitz” (2011) co-directed with Blanche Finger, “Barack Obama. Au coeur de la maison blanche” (2012), “Looking for Nicolas Sarkozy” (2011), “Philip Roth, sans complexe” (2010). An amused yet passionate observer of his contemporaries, in 2003 he received the Europa Gold Prize for a lifetime’s work.

Blanche FINGER is a scriptwriter and director. Her list of documentary credits include: “Jusqu’au dernier: la destruction des Juifs d’Europe” (2014), “Album(s) d’Auschwitz” (2011) co-directed with William Karel, “Ethel Rosenberg, la dernière danse” (2003) et “La Rafle du Vel d’Hiv, 50 ans après” (1992).

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