He's talking about Israel in the wake of 1972's Palestinian terror attack that resulted in the deaths of eleven Israeli Olympians. A team of covert agents is out to kill the eleven men responsible for planning those attacks. The mission seemed like a gesture of righteous anger at first. But the violence is taking a heavy toll on him and his teammates. Bodies are piling up on both sides. Has he lost his innocence? He pleads with the team leader, "That's my soul. If I lose that, I lose everything."
The questions at the heart of this film echo those that drive David Cronenberg's A History of Violence and Michael Haneke's Caché . Is it possible for a man to carry out violence and remain blameless? What is he to do if his loved ones are victims? Retaliate? Or refuse to employ the same tactics as their enemies? How can peace be achieved when the enemy refuses to put down their arms? And what provoked such hatred in the first place?
Munich, which may be Steven Spielberg's most challenging film, brings up all of those questions—and more, all of them relevant in the world today, as the U.S. wrestles with its future in Iraq, and as Israel and Palestine careen between promising gestures and exchanging painful blows.
It's a soul-searching film that offers no easy answers. My full review is at Looking Closer.
"The issues America is dealing with now are issues that Israel and other nations have dealt with for a long, long time," writes Peter T. Chattaway (Christianity Today Movies), "and while we may or may not agree with Spielberg's take on the matter, it is to his credit that he has asked us to address our current concerns by ...1