DIRECTOR’S STATEMENT

Witnessing the maiming and killing of children in a war, without being able to do anything about it, is a great challenge. The short glimpses of children’s faces displayed on my TV set, after they had lived through the war, was  my motivation for making  Tears of Gaza.  A protest against all wars grew inside me. Wars are senseless, destructive, unworthy of mankind. Wars are never a solution to bilateral problems in the long run. In my films, I have always been concerned with the fate of the victims.  In the Gaza-Israel conflict, there are presumably two victimized parties. A responsibility which both the USA and Europe will have to shoulder.     My hope is that this film will arouse the same feelings of protest among the audiences, and that it will bring inspiration to continue the seemingly endless struggle against poverty, suffering and war. In the film, I quote a father who sits with his phosphorous injured child: “What God do these people believe in, who can do this against children? And how can I gather the strength to forgive?”     This film has been a year in the making, and it was a pleasure to let its world premiere take place in Toronto.  I started my career as a documentary filmmaker. From the 1970’s on I made feature films. With this film, I have chosen to use elements of fiction and to use the theater as a venue.  In contrast to TV, the cinema provides the opportunity to absorb. My hope is that this emotional approach will spur protest, and the desire for people to contribute to making a better world. There are major obstructions inherent in this presentation. The cinema constitutes a fantastic arena for communication which to a great extent has been taken over by the entertainment industry.     – Vibeke Løkkeberg

Familie-ruin02   Folkevandring

 

PRODUCER’S STATEMENT

My goal for Tears of Gaza is to show how civilians, women and children are the victims of war.  I want to show that now more than ever, war does not have the ability to solve bilateral conflicts.     It is necessary to show the victims’ point of view in order to understand the terror that wars cause.  I also want to show that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the so called “War against Terrorism” create human conflicts.  The use of words like terrorist, discrimination and democracy tend to be mantras for justifying the use of violence.  We chose to concentrate on the little things in life in the areas where real people live.  In order to create an identification and understanding of all wars, we focused on the destinies and emotions of people to show just how wrong it is to use violence to accomplish these means.     No journalists were allowed to enter Gaza during the bombings in 2009.  Because of that, the world received a superficial picture of what really happened.  If one shows how ordinary families live and suffer, people can connect to them in a far more personal way.  Then one discovers how daily life, war and occupation are all tied together.  A film can be much more effective than dozens of historical and political stories of presenting these views.  A documentary can cover these issues deeper and broader than the traditional media is often permitted to. –  Terje Kristiansen