- 1 hr 25 min
Strangers is a compelling drama film that follows the story of three strangers from wildly different backgrounds whose lives intertwine through an unexpected occurrence. The movie is set in contemporary Israel, and its themes touch on issues of security, identity, and human connections. The story begins with an Israeli family, Eyal and Vicky, whose son dies in a car accident while serving in the Israeli army. The couple's grief compels them to make an impulsive decision to disconnect from their daily lives and embark on a long hike in the desert. Along the way, they encounter a Palestinian boy named Mohammed, who is lost in the desert.
The boy, Mohammed, is on the run from militants who seek revenge for his brother's death. As a result, Mohammed is not sure whom to trust, but he eventually puts his faith in the Israeli couple, who take him under their care. The couple and the boy develop an intimate bond as they trek through the desert terrain and face danger from various sources.
Mohammed's presence in the couple's lives disrupts their meaningful relationship, forcing them to confront their prejudices and biases. They see through his eyes, the suffering of the Palestinians who are all too often depicted as heartless aggressors in mainstream Israeli media. The couple learns about the innocence of children who are caught in the crossfire of the conflict.
As the strangers hike through the desert, they encounter various characters whose lives intersect with theirs. Through these encounters, the movie delves into the harsh realities of life in contemporary Israel, highlighting the efforts of ordinary citizens to cope with their divisive political environment.
The performances by the three leads in Strangers are nothing short of extraordinary. Liron Levo is excellent as Eyal, a military man who has suppressed his emotions all his life, only to have them rise to the surface in his time of intense but heartbreaking loss. Lubna Azabal is also remarkable as Vicky, portraying a woman grappling with her grief who feels like she is losing the only person she has left in her life. Abdallah El Akal is also excellent as Mohammed, bringing authenticity and pathos to his portrayal of a boy who has learned to grow up too fast.
Another notable aspect of Strangers is its cinematography. The movie showcases several breathtaking landscapes that serve as a backdrop to the story's unfolding drama. The desert expanse is both life-giving and treacherous; it's both freeing and punishing. The movie's visuals help to convey the complexity and despair of the characters' situations.
The movie's score also deserves praise for its haunting and visceral quality. The music enhances the emotions on the screen and made me feel the character's disconnection from their familiar way of life. The haunting melodies helped me to connect with the characters' sense of loss, confusion, and vulnerability.
Overall, Strangers is a heart-wrenching and moving film that challenges the audience to confront their preconceptions about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The movie's unique setting, powerful performances, and breathtaking visuals make it a must-see. Additionally, it's a movie that speaks to our common humanity and the fact that we are all strangers until we connect with others. Strangers is a thoughtful reminder that our common humanity is more significant than the divisions that set us apart.
Strangers is a 2007 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 25 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.6.