A film of three very distinct nonlinear acts, Moaz’s film examines grief, family turbulence and war in present day Israel. When Michael Feldman (Ashkenazi) receives word his son has been killed while on active duty, it sets off a chain of events.
Much of the second act of the film closely follows his son Jonathan as part of a four-soldier unit manning an isolated and old-fashioned checkpoint. Every so often a car (or a camel) arrives. IDs are checked. The barrier is lifted. The barrier is lowered. The tedious nature of war goes on like this in cycles. But something so utterly tragic is about to happen. And then without giving too much away, the last act of Foxtrot returns us primarily to Jonathan’s family six months later.
It feels fair to compare Foxtrot to Jarhead, to some extent. Both display the boring unending tedium of war for some, in stark contrast to the everyday horrors others encounter. It must also be noted that the sensitive Israeli/Palestinian issue is touched upon here and handled well.
At the core of Moaz’s film are those aching familial concerns when a son or daughter ventures out into an uncertain world, away from your control, and all that’s left is the waiting and the wondering. It’s an emotional rollercoaster of a drama but Foxtrot is a well-made and unsettling meditation on the problematic nature of war. Shane O’Reilly
Director: Samuel Moaz
Talent: Lior Ashkenazi, Sarah Adler
Release: March 1