Associate Professor, Chair of Cinema Studies
Dept. of Communication & Journalism
Head, the Smart Communication Institute
The Hebrew University

Waltzing with BashirThe conversation with Erez Laufer centered on the close link between aesthetics and ethics in Rabin in His Own Words (2015), referring to both the production and the film as text. Defining post-traumatic cinema, Morag indicated a few crucial choices made by Laufer in the making of the film: first, the decision not to show any documentation of the assassination itself, so the traumatic event in and of itself remained unrepresent-able, as it is ontologically; second, a choice that goes hand in hand with the first to render the film only in Rabin’s own words, namely, to exclude the assassination, although the film does follow a linear narrative.

Continuing this line of thought, Laufer reflected on his decision during the early stages of production to learn about Rabin only from available materials and not to interview anyone who could provide further information. He also pointed out the materials that appeared for the first time in the film and were unknown before that.

The last phase of the discussion was centered on historical events that were (or were not) included in the film, and the ways the film represents Rabin’s personality and iconization. Discussed were issues such as Rabin’s nervous breakdown during the days leading up to the Six Day War, his premonitions in regard to Gush Emunim, his legacy for peace, as well as the ways the film functions as a history of the State of Israel.