In May 1948, a group of European Jewish refugees illegally sail to Palestine via the cargo freighter Kedma, arriving only a few days before the departure of British forces and the founding of the nation of Israel. Once ashore they are received by the Palmach, Jewish fighters who help them evade arrest by British troops. Hiding amid the hills, they have a chance to tell their story, and there's even time for some singing. But before they can even change out of their civilian clothes, the weary immigrants are instructed in machine gun use and promptly sent off into combat against a hostile Arab force. Bloody battle and heartrending tragedy ensues, with both sides making mournful predictions for the future of their shared land. Directed by acclaimed filmmaker Amos Gitai, KEDMA is an elegiac, beautifully photographed meditation on exile, hope, despair and the trouble-plagued history of the Jewish people. Andre Kashkar, Helen Yaralova, and Yussef Abu Wardu play some of the immigrants, who relate to each other their tales of survival against the Nazis even as they once more face death in defense of their soon to be founded nation.
Israel / State Of Israel |
Jewish Heritage |
Theatrical Release: January 27, 2003 (NY)
KEDMA had its debut at the 2002 Cannes Film Festival.