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Death In Gaza [DVD]


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Product details

  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Dutch, Greek, Hebrew, French
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: 20 Feb. 2006
  • Run Time: 80 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000CDINRC
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 67,465 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Directed and filmed by James Miller and written and reported by Sarah Shah, this shockingly brutal documentary explores the culture of hate that permeates the Middle East, culminating with Miller’s own death at the hands of an Israeli soldier.

In Spring 2003, James Miller and Saira Shah set out to Gaza to "understand how people learn to hate so deeply they’re prepared to die in order to kill". Their focus is the next generation, "the children who will make either peace or war" told through the tainted eyes of three Palestinian children indoctrinated into the creed of Jihad.

Palestinian children in Nablas and Rafah constantly provoke the IDF, showering the tanks with rocks and taunting the soldiers inside. Firing toy guns and playing games of ‘Jews and Arabs’ in the streets by day, the real-life militants come out in the streets by Rafah by night – as do the Israeli tanks and night-vision troops trying to track them down. Miller and Shah visit these militants to survey the determination and mentality of people prepared to die to kill. The cult of martyrdom is engrained in Gaza, with Palestinians celebrating each death by parading in the streets with freshly printed posters that turn the latest person to die into a new martyr. The powerful feeling this evokes amongst those dedicated to the ‘holy cause’ is wonderfully captured.

Death in Gaza culminates with James Miller’s last day. Filming the sustained attack of Israeli tanks on suspected militant residences Miller and Shah are trapped inside a house, and wait until the fighting ceases to make their move. Attempting to leave the area by waving a white flag through the darkness, Miller assumes that the Israeli soldiers will recognise him as a journalist and let his team pass. Instead, shots ring out, killing Miller instantly, the tragedy being captured by a local film crew. James Miller becomes another victim in the conflict he gave his life to cover.

"We asked them not to print a poster of James," says Shah, "but they wouldn't listen. So, on May the second, 2003, the extremists gained another martyr. The rest of us lost James."

Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Mark H on 25 July 2010
Format: DVD
To me this is one of the most thought provoking and moving films i have seen since Miss Sarejevo. Having worked in conflict zones i have a fairly balandced view and feel this film isnt pro-Israili if it were i would be the first to comment. It is however a depiction of young people stuck in a war zone and being pushed to take sides in an unwinable war. To see two ordanairy by being subjected to daily death and radicalisation is shocking made all the more shocking that they are so ordanairy and normal young boys like my own son. This is also a great tribute to a camerman who paid the ultimate price for trying to tell the world a story.
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27 of 34 people found the following review helpful By Mr. C. Vaughan on 31 July 2006
Format: DVD
Although some may see this film as propaganda, this dvd contains one half of the story. James Miller planned to make a second half of this documentary - concentrating on the effect of the confict on the children of Israel. It seems that people have seen this film and forgotten that this work is incomplete or presume that this great film-maker was biased.

Keeping that in mind, the documentary itself is excellent and is a worthy addition to the dvd collection. It is a testament to Film and Journalism.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful By P. F. Soto on 15 Jan. 2012
Format: DVD
If anyone watches this film, it should be to understand how the zionist propaganda machine works.
This is a study in hate - portraying the victims of a terrorist regime as 'extremists.' In the zionist world, white is black and war is peace.
Every citizen of the planet should be educated as to how this racist regime operates. There are many, many good documentaries on Palestine. To understand the zionist control of mass media, see 'Peace, Propaganda and the Promised Land'.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Ferdyb on 15 July 2009
Format: DVD
Death in Gaza is an HBO production. The tale of a twisted world where the greatest glory is to die a martyr, and the filmmaker whose story becomes part of the story he sets out to tell.
Award winner filmmaker James Miller follows reporter Saira Shah as she attempts to unravel the cycle of violence . In Ghaza they meet three children who have grown up trapped between the Israeli army and Palestinian militants as their world crumbles around them.
The film ends in March 2003 on a day like many others in Gaza - with death. but on this day the victim is the filmmaker James Miller, who is shot dead by an Israeli soldier.
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34 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Kestrel on 27 April 2006
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This remarkably balanced, yet poignant film offers so much more than a direct insight into the Israel/Palestine conflict. Focussing on 3 of the children caught up in the conflict it identifies the lack of hope for their futures and the allure of martyrdom for lost souls.

Carefully exposing the relationships and tensions in this volatile area, the most poignant revelation is the hope of a positive role model for 2 of the boys featured- over the course of filming they leave behind their paramilitary connections and, instead aspire to be cameramen like the Director, James Miller.

The real tragedy is not in the exposure of the hopeless situation for Palestinian children, but in the cold blooded murder of the Director, James Miller by the Israeli Defence Force.

They tried to kill the story - but his remarkable and unforgettable legacy lives on forever in this film as well as all his others.
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33 of 45 people found the following review helpful By Claude on 22 May 2007
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
What a deeply disappointing film, especially after the highly publicised death of James Miller [ironically at the hands of an Israeli soldier] I thought I was going to see an even handed appraisal of the situation, however, this film is definitely pro-Israel [in common with most of the British media most of the time, unfortunately] indeed, it is almost [but not quite] impressive how Saira Shah et al., seek to blame almost anyone other than the Israelis for this tragic stuation, even when the images and content shown would suggest quite the contrary. Anyone who is really interested in a fair appraisal of the Palestinian conflict should read titles such as 'Beyond Chutzpah' by Norman G Finkelstein or 'The Iron Wall' by Professor Avi Shlaim [there are many more titles !]. You are unlikely to learn anything new from this film.
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21 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Brian Covert on 12 Aug. 2006
Format: DVD
"Death in Gaza" is a magnificent piece of work by Saira Shah and the late James Miller, obviously two of the most talented journalists of this generation. The narrative is dramatic yet easy to follow, the footage is unbelievably good considering the dangerous conditions under which it was shot, and the Palestinian children steal the show with their honesty and open hearts.

If there was one weakness in this production, I would say it is the documentary's tendency, starting from the introduction, to paint the Palestinian resistance in somewhat sinister tones and the Israeli military violence in somewhat justificatory tones. But then again, that's probably to be expected, given that this was a production of the HBO cable television network in the United States. Readers and viewers of news in the U.S. rarely get any real background on the deadly conflict in Israel-Palestine beyond the simplistic notion of "Israelis -- good, Palestinians -- bad." U.S. outlets like HBO do have a demonstrated history of putting a pro-American/pro-Israeli bias into their Middle East news reports, and that bias unfortunately seems to seep through in "Death in Gaza" as well.

The Israeli military attacks on Palestine and Lebanon that we witness today make this 2003 documentary footage look tame by comparison, especially when it comes to the continuing violence against innocent children. But I'm very glad I bought and watched "Death in Gaza," and would encourage others to do the same; the documentary does great justice to getting at the truth of the suffering that people on all sides are going through. Beyond that, we must also continue to demand justice and accountability for the death of James Miller, a brilliant filmmaker who literally gave his life to see this film made.
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