Micha Shagrir Film Collection

The Elhadad Family

51 Minutes, 1980

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Directed by: Micha Shagrir
Production:Igal Efrati, Micha Shagrir, Dan Arazi, David Schitz
Production Company:Israel Film Service
Photographer: Ilan Rosenberg, Moshe Schiff
Original Music: Benny Hendel, שבתאי שריג
Language: Hebrew
Subtitles: English, Hebrew

The documentary The Elhadad Family, produced by the Israeli Film Service, traces the experiences of the Elhadad family, which is located in the city of Meknes in Morocco. The familys 11 children were scattered between France, Israel, and Morocco. The family members find themselves in an unresolved struggle with their identity, which is divided between three countries. While dealing with manifestations of racism and discrimination from different directions, the film also examines their attitude to concepts such as home, Judaism, nationality, and the State of Israel. Long before the practice of Orientalism became a trend in Israeli cultural discourse, Micha Shagrir first opened this Pandoras box by tracking one family in realtime. Ambassador refrained from narrowing the discussion to the situation of the development towns, to a specific absorption story, or the attitude of the Israeli governments towards North African immigrants. In his cinematic way, he expands the discourse and also accompanies the family members who did not come to Israel at all and delves into their attitude toward Judaism and Israel, which is different from that of their relatives who chose to immigrate and be absorbed into it. A situation where Ashkenazi students come to the development towns to help with education and culture also charges the film with individual protest and local activism voices.

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