The Bubble

September 7th, 2007


The Bubble

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The movie follows a group of young friends in the city of Tel Aviv and is as much a love song to the...

Release Year: 2006

Rating: 7.1/10 (2,559 voted)

Critic's Score: 61/100

Director: Eytan Fox

Stars: Ohad Knoller, Yousef 'Joe' Sweid, Daniella Wircer

The movie follows a group of young friends in the city of Tel Aviv and is as much a love song to the city as it is an exploration of the claim that people in Tel Aviv are isolated from the rest of the country and the turmoil it's going through. The movie looks at young people's lives in Tel Aviv through the POVs of gays and straights, Jews and Arabs, men and women. It all begins when Noam, a young Israeli soldier, serves in the reserve forces and meets at a check point a Palestinian young man called Ashraf. Following an incident during which Noam misplaces his ID card at the check point, Ashraf shows up on the doorstep of the apartment that Noam shares with a gay man and a straight woman. How will the meeting affect all of their lives?

Writers: Gal Uchovsky, Eytan Fox

Ohad Knoller - Noam
Yousef 'Joe' Sweid - Ashraf
Daniella Wircer - Lulu
Alon Friedman - Yali (as Alon Freidmann)
Zohar Liba - Golan
Tzion Baruch - Shaul (as Zion Baruch)
Oded Leopold - Sharon
Ruba Blal - Rana, Ashraf's Sister
Shredi Jabarin - Jihad (as Shredy Jabarin)
Yael Zafrir - Orna
Noa Barkai - Ella
Yotam Ishay - Chiki
Eliana Bakier - Dalfi (as Eliana Bekiyer)
Avital Barak - Dana
Lior Ashkenazi - Himself - Actor in "Bent"


Official Website: MySpace | Official site [Israel] |

Release Date: 7 September 2007

Filming Locations: Alenbi Street, Tel Aviv, Israel

Box Office Details

Budget: $1,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend: $38,882 (USA) (9 September 2007) (10 Screens)

Gross: $157,121 (USA)

Did You Know?

The play that several characters go to watch in this movie is a real play, "Bent" by Martin Sherman, which was first produced in 1979 in London (with Ian McKellen in the lead role) and then in New York (with Richard Gere taking over for McKellen). The play is about the persecution of gay people at the hands of the Nazis, and was one of the first works to bring attention to that aspect of the Holocaust. The play was made into the movie Bent.

User Review

Amazing film

Rating: 10/10

I am currently on vacation in Israel for summer, and so was able to see this incredible film. A bit of a warning before I begin writing: I speak fluent Hebrew, and so the Hebrew parts were no problem; however, about a quarter (a bit less) of the film is in Arabic, and I was unable to understand a bit of this subtitled bit. This did not detract from my understanding of the film, but did cause me to miss a few jokes which evoked some strong laughs in the theater.

After a year of American Cinema which many hailed as one of the greatest years for homosexual cinema and relationships, it takes something truly special to stand head and shoulders above the rest; yet, "The Bubble" surpasses all others with its blend of excellent acting, witty dialogue, and relevant political climate.

The film opens on a checkpoint on the Israeli-Palestinian border; For the first few moments, we are unsure about the type of movie we have walked in on. Yet, this is an important element of this film's strength. The political situation, and the extreme tension in the air is constantly in the background. Most importantly, Tel Aviv serves as a character of its own in this film. It is constantly referenced. Street names and restaurant names are constantly exchanged. The skyline and city development is critiqued quite harshly, and ultimately the city evolves along with the film The film focuses on the love between Noam (Ohad Knoller) and a Palestinian immigrant, Ashraf(Yousef 'Joe' Sweid), with the societies of Tel Aviv and Palestine serving as a constant foil. We always know that their relationship is forbidden, and this creates a sense of urgency rarely present in cinema. The love is incredibly strong, and stands as the centerpiece of the film. The secondary relationships and friendships are equally strong: flamboyant restaurant owner Yelli's ( Yousef 'Joe' Sweid) relationship with the ultra-butch and grating golani solider, Golan (Zohar Liba), is particularly a source of amusement. The love scenes which abound in this film are all exquisite, fine crafted works of art, and the cinematography is astounding: In the first love scene of the film, the camera pans down as a male character gives oral sex to Lulu (Daniela Virtzer), and dissolves into a shot of Noam and Ashraf. This shot any many others lead the viewer to realize that all of these relationships are expressions of the very same form of love.

To give away more of the storyline would be a tragedy, but know that there is a lot of political tension and tragedy which touches onto the current world political climate, so I will instead focus on the witty dialogue. Even when watching this movie in my second language, I could not stop laughing throughout. Lines of particular amusement include the question of whether gay suicide bombers receive virgin women or men in heaven, and an analogy of Sampson from the bible as the worlds first suicide bomber. This dialogue shows a particular sense of purity and reality which is rarely seen in Cinema. The music used in the film is also particularly powerful. Music is only used in times when characters legitimately could or should be listening to it, and in one scene the music weakens when a character removes one earphone and stops when he removes the other. Little elements like this truly elevate the film.

I could not give greater recommendation to a film; this is a superb work of cinema which is catharthic as well as extremely well crafted.


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