on November 03, 2000 by Ed Scheid
   Israeli director Amos Gitai ("Kadosh") has based "Kippur" on his personal experiences in the 1973 Yom Kippur War started by surprise attacks on Israel by Egypt and Syria. The film begins with an extremely sensual scene of an artist and his lover with paint and canvas. After the war breaks out, Weinraub (Liron Levo) the artist and his friend Ruso (Tomer Ruso) rush to join their unit. The unit has already left so the two join an air force rescue team. In constant danger, Weinraub and his helicopter team tenaciously persevere in evacuating the dead and wounded.

   Gitai's forceful direction realistically captures the chaos, dislocation and agony that the helicopter team witness and experience. A sequence in which the men frantically try to rescue a wounded soldier without collapsing into the surrounding mud is particularly harrowing. The film is also very compelling since Gitai humanizes the conflict by never losing sight of the soldiers' reactions.    Starring Liron Levo, Tomer Ruso and Uri Ran Klauzner. Directed by Amos Gitai. Written by Amos Gitai and Marie-Jose Sanselme. Produced by Michel Propper and Amos Gitai. A Kino release. Drama. Hebrew-language; subtitled. Running time: 121 min.

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