Close to Home


Generally favorable reviews - based on 13 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 13
  2. Negative: 0 out of 13

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Critic Reviews

  1. 75
    Sayar and Schnendar are likeable performers, and if Bilu and Hager had pushed the "private school for girls" side of Close To Home a little harder, they could have had a sharp satire on their hands. Instead, it's all played straight and close to the surface.
  2. 75
    It presents an image of today's Israeli army, composed of teenagers who are by now several generations removed from the founders' original vision and have begun to question whether tactics designed to keep the country safe will only lead to increased levels of fear, humiliation and deadly violence.
  3. Filmmakers Vardit Bilu and Dalia Hagar don't seem as interested in taking sides as they do in exploring universal themes.
  4. One of the rare movies from Israel that refuses to spell out its politics, and you may wind up grateful for the ambiguity.
  5. The film is much more subversive for treading back and forth between the political and the personal, the Arab and the Israeli points of view.
  6. Reviewed by: Derek Elley
    Mixes humor, tragedy, tenderness and political acumen into a well-observed coming-of-age format.
  7. 70
    I won't argue for the cinematic virtues of this film; they don't exist. But as a pseudo-documentary portrait of real life behind the explosive headlines, it's absorbing.
  8. The movie, written and directed by Vidi Bilu and Dalia Hager, is really a study of people coping with excruciating boredom and the absurd aspects of military life.
  9. Close to Home is a slender slice -- a sliver is more like it -- of a very rich cake.
  10. Reviewed by: Patrick Peters
    A slyly subversive insight into the role of women in the Israeli military, this is a surprisingly compassionate satire that makes its political points without resorting to caricature.
  11. 50
    Though it clearly means to call into question the legitimacy of their work, the movie is formlessly episodic as it meanders from one day to the next, finally losing itself in a forest of coming-of-age clich├ęs.
  12. In short, this squad is an ill-trained, slovenly bunch of soldiers. That such behavior exists, or can exist, in any army is surely commonplace, but that Israeli producers should want to make a film about the matter at this time is puzzling.
  13. 50
    This movie just seems like a scattered excuse to make political points without saying much of anything. Worse, it also fails to show us, with any vividness, how Mirit and Smadar think and feel as women.
User Score

No user score yet- Awaiting 1 more rating

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. JohnA.
    Jan 3, 2009
    A very important film showing the reality of Israel today and the risk of live and work there. Congratulations to the Director and the participants.