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The Attack (2013)

The Attack




Release Date

June 21, 2013 (Limited)

MPAA Rating



102 min.


Cohen Media Group

REVIEWS RATE:  Critics  Nothing's perfect, but it's worth seeing.    Readers  Be the 1st!

Cast and Crew


Ziad Doueiri


Jean Brehat


Ziad Doueiri


  • Ali Suliman
  • Evgenia Dodena
  • Reymond Amsalem
  • Dvir Benedek
  • Uri Gavriel
  • Ruba Salameh
  • Karim Saleh
  • Ramzi Makdessi


When a suicide bomber strikes at a Tel Aviv cafe, Dr. Amin Jaafari (Ali Suliman), a Palestinian citizen of Israel and a highly respected surgeon, treats the wounded victims of the blast at a nearby hospital - at least those who will let him, as some refuse to be attended to by a Palestinian. Jaafari is not unaccustomed to such affronts, but this dreadful day has a far ruder shock in store. Late that night, Jaafari is called back to the hospital to identify the body of the bomber: his wife.

In an instant, Jaafari's comfortable life is shattered. Grief-stricken, wracked by guilt and tormented by his own incomprehension, the doctor embarks on a desperate journey to understand his wife's motivations for her terrible act. Retracing his wife's recent trip to the occupied West Bank, where she had claimed to be visiting relatives, Jaafari goes in search of the people who recruited her, a voyage fraught with danger and surprises. What begins as an investigation, however, gradually evolves into a painful and revealing self-reckoning, as Jaafari is forced to confront the sum of his own life's choices and the shaky foundations of his overlapping identities: as a Palestinian, an Israeli citizen, a doctor, and a husband.

Adapted from the critically acclaimed novel by the pseudonymous Algerian writer Yasmina Khadra, the new film from director Ziad Doueiri (West Beirut) is both a psychological thriller and an incisive exploration of one of the most complex political-ideological issues of our time. Lucid, precise and fearless, The Attack foregoes sermonizing, simplification and manipulation to remind us of cinema's ability to engage with a charged political reality, to undermine the stereotypes that help fuel it and reveal it in its full, tragic, human dimension.

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Pictures (3 photos)

Ali Suliman stars as Amin Jaafari in Focus Features' The Attack (2013)
Evgenia Dodena stars as Kim and Ali Suliman stars as Amin Jaafari in Focus Features' The Attack (2013)

Reader's Reviews

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“..the most frightening thing in the movie-maybe in the movies this year-is her loving decency..”
by Alan Scherstuhl [Village Voice]
“..much of "The Attack," then, is less about politics or violence than about a man wrestling with the sudden and traumatic loss of his own identity..”
by Andrew O'Hehir [Salon.com]
“.."The Attack" is a mystery, but not the kind you think. It's obvious from the start who detonated the bomb; the only question is why..”
by Michael O'Sullivan [Washington Post]