Tel Aviv on Fire

Israel, 2019, 97 min, 2K DCP, Dir. Sameh Zoabi, Not Rated, Arabic & Hebrew with English subtitles


One of the most irreverent cinematic spins on the Israeli–Palestinian conflict, the latest from writer-director Sameh Zoabi follows a fledgling soap-opera scenarist (Kais Nashif) tasked with concocting plot twists to suit riveted viewers on both sides. Zoabi’s ingenious satire exudes a deadpan audacity that’s impossible to resist, while Nashef’s outwardly unflappable middleman grounds this battle of ideologies in irresistible comic pragmatism. Tel Aviv on Fire won’t bring peace to the Middle East, but having everyone laughing together is a step in the right direction.