When Did Steven Spielberg Turn into Barbra Streisand?

Andrea Peyser of the New York Post rips Steven Spielberg a new one over his new film Munich.

When did Steven Spielberg turn into Barbra Streisand?

That’s what springs to mind after seeing “Munich” ‚Äî the director’s startlingly anti-Semitic rumination on Arab terrorism and the state of Israel.


In 2 1/2 excruciating hours, Spielberg’s film about the 1972 Olympics massacre of Israeli athletes by Islamic butchers sets out to solve Middle East violence while providing a blueprint for world peace.


Instead, Spielberg proves two things in his film, due in theaters just in time for Hanukkah:


1. Steven Spielberg is too dumb, too left and too Hollywood (or is that redundant?) to tackle such complex and polarizing themes as Islamic fundamentalism and Jewish survival.


2. Spielberg is a decent enough filmmaker to persuade some people that Israel has outlived its usefulness and should — as enemies in Iran maintain — be wiped off the face of the earth.


The backlash has begun. The Jewish Action Alliance has already called for a boycott of “Munich.”


Written by Zionism-hating screenwriter Tony Kushner, the film concerns a hit squad sent to assassinate 11 Arab terrorists in retaliation for the 1972 massacre.


One by one, the terrorists fall. And one by one, hit squad members suffer crises of conscience, culminating in one Israeli assassin crying out in agony, “All this blood cries back to us! Jews don’t do wrong because our enemies do wrong. We’re supposed to be righteous!”


Mercifully, he soon blows himself up.


Here lies the film’s biggest flaw ‚Äî and its greatest danger. “Munich” reeks of moral relativism. It puts the terrorists and those who respond to terror on even moral footing. It suggests that Israel must pay, one way or another, for vengeance.


In Time magazine, Spielberg reveals how Hollywood he’s sunk. About the Israelis, he said, tellingly, “A response to a response doesn’t really solve anything.”


Wait! The unprovoked atrocity carried out by Arabs in Munich is a “response?” To what, exactly? To the existence of Israel?


In one scene, the Israeli hit squad spends a night in a house with unsuspecting members of the Palestine Liberation Organization. Avner Kauffman (Eric Bana), the Israeli team’s leader, befriends a man called Ali, who argues eloquently that Israel has turned his people into hungry refugees.


The Arabs may have killed. But here, they win the race to victimhood.


Blood does not scare Spielberg ‚Äî think of the bloody beach in the lyrical opening scene of “Saving Private Ryan.” But here, the blood spurts, explodes and flows in slo-mo. Not satisfied, Spielberg brings his movie to its metaphorical climax when Avner, in bed with his wife, literally climaxes while daydreaming about the Munich massacre.


At the end, a demoralized Avner flees to Brooklyn. The head of Israel’s Mossad (Geoffrey Rush) tries to lure him back into service, saying his actions will bring peace.


“There is no peace!” Avner wails. In the background, the World Trade Center is visible.


I guess that’s Israel’s fault, too.

About Aussie Dave

An Aussie immigrant to Israel, Aussie Dave is founder and managing editor of Israellycool, one of the world's most popular pro-Israel blogs (and the one you are currently reading) He is a happy family man, and a lover of steak, Australian sports and girlie drinks

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  • Anonymous

    Thanks for posting this. I knew as soon as I read that Tony Kushner was the screenwriter that this would be a disaster. Blegh.

  • Anonymous

    G-d save us from ourselves.

  • Anonymous

    No way in hizell I am watching that. I knew it the minute I heard about it. In any case, anything by Spielberg gets a no show from me…. but this tops it, makes me sick to my stomach.

    Spielberg is a load of crap.


  • ed

    This review is one of the most idiotic things I have ever seen. This woman has no idea how to comprehend a difficult issue. Spielberg, on the other hand, does. Watch the film and see for yourself. It asks difficult questions and isn’t afraid of admitting there isn’t an easy answer. When Andrea Peyser writes “Munich was a response?!” she clearly did not pay attention to the film because it explains clearly how it could be seen that way in the film- and it isn’t hard to understand after a moment of thought, which is clearly more than Ms. Peyser is capable of. People have died on both sides for hundreds of years. Munich was not the beginning. What happened afterwards was not the end. That’s the point. It’s a tragic film about a complicated issue, and if it provided an easy answer it would be a lie, since blood continues to be spilled daily- clearly no working answer has yet been found. Foolish to fault a filmmaker for honesty, but at least I’ve learned of a newspaper to avoid. Any publication that would hire such a vulgar simpleton can’t be worth reading. Again- see the film yourself. If you aren’t an idiot, you will be enriched by it.

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