Waltz With Bashir is a beautifully made movie, and Gideon Levy will be rooting for writer/director Ari Folman to win the first Israeli Oscar tomorrow night, along with the rest of the country. “However, it must also be noted that the film is infuriating, disturbing outrageous, and deceptive,” he writes in Haaretz. “This is not an antiwar film. It is propaganda. Stylish, sophisticated, gifted, and tasteful—but propaganda.”
Note that Folman didn’t mention the then-raging Gaza war in his Golden Globes acceptance speech—little surprise, considering that it took the former soldier two dozen years to make this film about the Lebanon war. It’s an infuriating pro-Israel movie, resting on what Levy calls the “we shot and we cried” syndrome. The Israelis are sensitive, they go to therapy, the Nazis made them do it. The blood—that cartoon blood—isn’t on their hands.