Middle Eastern director Ido Haar helms the haunting cinema direct documentary 9 Star Hotel. The work introduces the audience to a cadre of Palestinian men who have built a transient community on the Israeli border, comprised of jerry-built huts and tiny, sarcophagus-like sleeping compartments. The men leave these quarters and systematically cross the border each morning before dawn, to work illegally at construction jobs in Israel - risking their safety and their lives to simply draw a regular income. Throughout, the workers stick close together (Haar suggests that the circumstances actually engender tighter social bonds between them) and evince a surprising sense of humor, tenacity and resilience. Meanwhile, constant hopes for improved circumstances in the future belie their lingering fears of being discovered and shot or arrested by Israeli authorities~Nathan Southern
This unflinching documentary follows Ahmed and Muhammad, two of the many Palestinians who illegally cross the border into the Israeli city of Modi'in looking for work. Together they share food, belongings and stories, and live under the constant threat of imprisonment from soldiers and police. With raw, handheld images, this disconcerting yet touching film documents friendship, nostalgia and the uncompromising urge to survive. Interview with Director Ido Haar, Original Theatrical Trailer. Hebrew and Arabic with English Subtitles.