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TIFF 2009 Day 4: Samuel Maoz’s Lebanon

Golden Lion-winning film Lebanon is an anti-war film from the earliest stages of the film, and is tense in a claustrophobic type of way – think Das Boot.

Gut feeling told me that this would the must see film at TIFF this year and my anticipation level only grew once award winner news from Venice was announced. Former solider himself, Samuel Moaz has an innate understanding for the kind of narrative possibilities that could take place both in and outside the walls of a tank. Golden Lion-winning film Lebanon is an anti-war film from the earliest stages of the film, and is tense in a claustrophobic type of way – think Das Boot. The elderly ladies sitting behind me in a press-and-industry screening gasped and made those irritating sounds that confirmed that even seasoned moviegoers had difficulties with the images presented on the screen. Can’t wait to see hat the future has in store for this film. Full review coming soon.

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Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist, and critic at IONCINEMA.com, established in 2000. A regular at Sundance, Cannes, and Venice, Eric holds a BFA in film studies from the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013, he served on the narrative competition jury at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson’s "This Teacher" (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022, he was a New Flesh Juror for Best First Feature at the Fantasia International Film Festival. Current top films for 2023 include The Zone of Interest (Glazer), Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell (Pham Thien An), Totem (Lila Avilés), La Chimera (Alice Rohrwacher), All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt (Raven Jackson).

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