Skip to main content

WHAT A WONDERFUL PLACE

Israel, 2005 (MIFF 2006, Homelands Now)

Director: Eyal Halfon

WHAT A WONDERFUL PLACE

Reminiscent of Robert Altman's elaborate ensemble cast pieces, What a Wonderful Place deftly weaves multiple story threads into an intricate tapestry, depicting the lives of marginalised immigrants living in the cracks of Israeli society.
On the Israeli border, ex-cop Franco rounds up a group of female illegal immigrants to be sold as prostitutes by a gangster named Boss. Matters are complicated for Franco when he finds his feelings growing for Jana, one of the captured women.
Jana's lost purse is found by Zeltzer, an Israeli farmer who is experiencing a taut domestic situation. Unbeknown to Zeltzer, his wife is having an affair with Aloni, a ranger who chases down illegal Thai poachers. Events knit the character's stories together, drawing them all towards a final confrontation in the Israeli desert.
With keen (and sometimes brutal) observations of Israeli society leavened with gentle humour, the stories of What a Wonderful Place form a compelling journey into the unseen netherworld of Israel's illegal immigrants.

D Eyal Halfon P Assaf Amir, Yoav Roeh S Eyal Halfon WS Cinephil
L English, Hebrew, Tagalog w/English subtitles
TD 35mm/2005/104mins

Eyal Halfon's films include The Italians are Coming (1996) and Circus Palestina (1998).

See also...

PAPER DOLLS

“Transsexual caregivers for Tel Aviv's elderly might sound like an odd topic for a documentary but Paper Dolls is as straight as it is orthodox.” - Variety Distilled from a six-episode Israeli ... More »

5 DAYS

Deftly capturing the mounting tension of a stand-off between soldiers and hardline settlers, 5 Days is a definitive snapshot of a historical moment which also manages to convey the wider-ranging ... More »

IT'S WINTER

It's Winter was in Official Competition at this year's Berlin Film Festival. ... Khatoun and her daughter are abandoned when her husband searches for work elsewhere. Months pass. His family doesn't ... More »

KILOMETRE ZERO

Kilometre Zero screened in Official Competition at last year's Cannes Film Festival. Veering between playful black comedy and telling commentary on the historical ethnic tensions that continue to ... More »

WILLOW TREE, THE

Beautiful in its simplicity and unfolding visual poetry, Academy Award nominee Majid Majidi's morality tale, The Willow Tree, challenges us to wrestle with our most primal fears and visceral desires ... More »

IRAQ IN FRAGMENTS

“A production of startling audacity and aesthetic provocation... if (director, James) Longley's astonishing feat of poetic agitation has a precedent in the entire history of documentary, I'm not ... More »

Select a festival
Search The Film Archive
Browse By Director