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From its triptych structure to the geometric lines of its cinematography, its absurdist, cartoon-like flashes of surrealism and even a brief animated sequence in the film’s third act, Israeli director Samuel Maoz’s tense, witty film, which won the grand jury prize at the Venice film festival in 2017, is designed like a graphic novel.
Jonathan Feldman (Yonathan Shiray) is a twentysomething Israeli border patrol guard with German-Jewish heritage, stationed in a shipping container that is sinking; we don’t know if he will come home. Director of photography Giora Bejach’s crisp digital shots and frequent overhead angles emphasise the modern shapes of Jonathan’s parents’ (Lior Ashkenazi and Sarah Adler) elegant, middle-class Tel Aviv apartment; hexagonal patterned tiles clash with a circular table and the hard right angles of a square armchair.
The film’s tastefully constricted aesthetic is enjoyably at odds with its unruly, philosophical themes; the slipperiness of a dual identity, the fragility of war and the relentless manner in which grief can leak into a home’s every crevice.
* This article was amended on 7 March 2019. An earlier version described the character Jonathan Feldman as being of “Ayran-German heritage”. This wholly inappropriate description has been changed to “German-Jewish heritage”.
Source: The Guardian
Keyword: Foxtrot review – surreal and stirring plight of an Israeli soldier | Drama films