Article Critique of “War Fantasies: Memory, Trauma and Ethics in Ari Folman’s Waltz with Bashir”

In the article, “War Fantasies: Memory, Trauma and Ethics in Ari Folman’s Waltz with Bashir,” the author Raz Yosef explores the interplay of memory, trauma and ethics in the Israeli war film, Waltz with Bashir. The author points out that the film shows how war trauma ruptures history and memory, which leads to the decline of national collective memory in Israel. The purpose of the author is to illustrate how private memories of the soldiers, who experienced the war firsthand, never make it into national collective memory due to the presence of traumatic events. Rather than becoming important parts of national collective memory, the objective and private memories of these soldiers stay in their dreams, hallucinations, and fantasies. The war that is portrayed in the film is the First Lebanon War which left painful scars on the Israeli national memory.

To illustrate his point further, to author provided a brief review of other films that portrayed the First Lebanon War. His comparison between these films is very useful because it helps the reader appreciate the uniqueness and similarities of Waltz with Bashir versus other films. However, it might have helped a little more if the author presented a short introduction to the plot of Waltz with Bashir before making such comparison so that the readers, who have not watched the film, can relate to such comparisons. It is only after the comparisons that the author presented a more detailed discussion, definition, and analysis of Waltz with Bashir. Another problem with the article is its lack of concluding remarks. The author presented the readers with numerous and fragmented ideas throughout the article but he failed to establish a unifying thought or implication in the end.

Overall, nevertheless, the author was able to present all of his ideas and arguments in a thorough and cohesive manner. Yet, the article could still be improved through better organization and addition of a concluding remark (Yosef).



Works Cited

Yosef, Raz. “War Fantasies: Memory, Trauma, and Ethics in Ari Folman’s Waltz With Bashir.” Journal of Modern Jewish Studies 9.3 (2010): 311-326.