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O Jerusalem (DVD Review)

2 May, 2009 By: Erika Carmona

O Jerusalem

Street 5/12/09
Anchor Bay
Box Office $0.2 million
$26.97 DVD
Rated ‘R’ for some war scenes.
Stars Ian Holm, Tom Conti, Tovah Feldshuh, Said Taghamaoui, J.J. Feild.

In New York, Bobby (J.J. Feild) and Said (Said Taghamaoui) are the best of friends. But when Said is called to duty by his uncle in Palestine, both are forced to become each other’s enemies.

The epic drama O Jerusalem, based on the nonfiction book by Larry Collins and Dominique Lapierre, begins in 1946, but its main focus is of the subsequent years during the rise in war conditions between the Arab Palestinians and Jews over the occupation of Jerusalem and the creation of the Israeli state.

The film re-enacts the historic tension and the battles that followed, while also cleverly showcasing balanced viewpoints from the sides of the Arabs, Jews and British (whose involvement with Jerusalem can be traced to the end of World War I).  

Although the story of the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict can be easily found in history books and newspapers worldwide, O Jerusalem also captures the painful loses of loved ones and the courageous acts of both groups to defend their beliefs. 

Feild and Taghamaoui’s performance imbue life and compassion into a story marred by a horrible topic such as war. Although one plays the role of a Jew (Feild) and the other of an Arab (Taghamaoui), the unholy war allows them to realize how both are fighting for the same cause — a city of peace.  

History buffs and war-movie fanatics will enjoy O Jerusalem.

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