They Were Ten

100 Minutes, 1960
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Directed by: Baruch Dienar
Cast: Oded Teomi, Leo Filler, Ninet Dinar, Yoseph Safra, Gabriel Dagan, Nissim Azikri, Yitzhak Bareket, Israel Rubinchik, Joseph (Bomba) Tzur
Production:Baruch Dienar
Production Company:Scopus Productions
Photographer: Lionel Banes, Dezmond Davis
Language: Hebrew
Subtitles: English, Hebrew

A Zionist, pioneer Western. A film by Baruch Dienar, chronicling the struggles a group of pioneers are up against as they set out to build new, Jewish communities in Palestine. On top of their clashes with the Ottoman leadership of the time, and their Arab neighbours, inner tensions and friction within the group begin to emerge. Bearing in mind that this film was made in 1960, one look at the cast reveals a plethora of Israeli theatre and film’s next big stars – Oded Teomi, Bomba Tzur, Nissim Azikri, and others – all appearing here in their big screen debuts. The range of conflicts the film tackles – the individual vs. society, order vs. chaos, etc. – are standard tropes of the Western genre, as are the wide, scenic shots that foster a bond between man and the land’s vistas.

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