Two profanities; one brief, promiscuous love-making scene (no nudity); and, some violence relative to the story
Love has no boundaries when two childhood friends from different political backgrounds reunite. After six years in New York, 21-year-old Ben, a Jew, returns to the Israeli West Bank for military service. He rekindles his secret childhood friendship with Laila, an Arab, but can their controversial relationship withstand the dramatic and volatile political realities of the Middle East? Any indiscreet action could cost them their lives.
Influenced by his years in America, Ben is more trusting of the Arabs than his compatriots. Laila, raised by an enlightened father, has few of the prejudices that her neighbors have. Like a Middle East version of ROMEO AND JULIET, their love blossoms despite the hostile environment, creating irreconcilable rifts with their families.
Ben’s love for Laila confuses his loyalties to his family and his country, Israel, resulting in accusations of betrayal. Similarly, Laila, although from a liberal background, is torn between a love for her parents and the knowledge that her behavior is perceived as dishonorable. Is their love doomed? To escape is their only hope.
The film tugs at your heart. A love story of conviction, compassion and courage, it brings to life the political realities of the Middle East and makes poignant the effects on its people. The film is also a call for peace. As Ben asks an Arab professor, “If a Jew wants to listen, shouldn’t you be willing to talk?”
The film has unrealistic expectations, though, about peace between Israel and the Arab nations who want to establish a Palestinian state on land that God gave to Israel. In fact, God’s giving the land to Abraham through the descendants of Isaac is one of only seven promises He has sworn with an oath, occurring 48 times in Scripture. Furthermore, Zechariah 12: 2 says, “I am going to make Jerusalem a cup that sends all the surrounding peoples reeling. Judah will be besieged as well as Jerusalem. On that day, when all the nations of the earth are gathered against her, I will make Jerusalem an immovable rock for all the nations.” And, in chapter 14, “I will gather all the nations to Jerusalem to fight against it. Then the Lord will go out and fight against those nations, as he fights in the day of battle.”
It should be emphasized, however, that there can be peace and reconciliation between individuals of these nations. How? When they become brothers in the Lord Jesus Christ. The time for that is now, even “Today, if you hear his voice… ” (Hebrews 3:7).
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please pray that all these people come to Christ. Until then, “pray for the peace of Jerusalem” (Psalm 122: 6).