Can a single film explain the conflict in Israel and Palestine and help us find our way forward?
Dear Crowd Funders, Friends, Family, and supporters of The Tinderbox,
Thanks to those of you who have been supporting us from the start and to new supporters for reading this. We are finally making our big distribution push, bringing our documentary film to the wider public, and I need your help. I am thrilled to announce that we have the opportunity to show The Tinderbox in cinemas around Britain (real-world or virtually) from February 2022. This has always been key to our release strategy. In addition to showcasing the film’s beautiful visuals, cinema-screenings raise public awareness of films and the subjects they portray in a way that few other things can. Reviews and publicity that go alongside such documentary showings allow more people to discover, engage with, and debate crucial issues.
As many of you will know, I made this film because I believe it’s time to stop running from issues surrounding Israel Palestine, and our perceptions of any attendant toxicity. This can only happen through widespread and verified education, and an increased level of honesty that has too often been absent from political dialogue. As we know from films like ‘The End of the Line’ (which changed legislation and supermarket sourcing of fish) and ‘An Inconvenient Truth’, the right film at the right time can make a difference.
Many of you will know that unanticipated, this film became very personal, a cautionary tale, and a plea to overturn decades of propaganda and rise above epic levels of finger-pointing. As I said to a friend, I set out to make a film about the situation in IP and was surprised to find I've made a film about 'othering' and the nature of democracy...
I’m extremely lucky to have been supported by amazing colleagues - we are a multi-BAFTA, multi-award-winning, twice Oscar-nominated team, and this is the film that I have wanted to make for more than a decade. Given the controversial nature of The Tinderbox we have found it incredibly difficult to raise funds for and have managed to complete the film through the generosity of the team, private donations, and crowd-funding.
Many of you have already been incredibly generous and I am sorry to ask again, but while the film is now finished, we will only be able to show it to the public in cinemas when we have paid final archive license fees (£14,000), and for British film certification (£1000).
Would you consider making a crowd-funding contribution in order to help us release the film cinematically, allowing it to reach a much wider audience?
Thank you for reading this, and for your generosity, Gillian
A few things people have said about the film:
An intelligent even-handed documentary
Patrick Cockburn, The Independent, and, Counterpunch
This is a dispassionate, non-polemical, and compelling documentary which presents an outstanding account of the past and the present of a complex web of political and human relations. Quite simply, it is one of the best documentary films I have watched in quite some time.
Professor Iain Scobbie, Director of the Manchester International Law Centre
Everybody (and I mean everybody, not just Jews and Arabs) should have the opportunity to see this film. It is a strange combination of fearlessly addressing something extremely complex but with tremendous clarity and simplicity.
Tim McInnerny, actor
Through historic footage and interviews with Israelis and Palestinians today, ‘The Tinderbox’ takes viewers to the heart of this century-old conflict. Intensely personal and humane, Gillian Mosely’s film is an eloquent call for mutual understanding and respect through an honest reckoning with the past.
Professor Eugene Rogan, Director of the Middle East Centre, Oxford University
No one comes well out of this story, but history has reserved a special shame for the British. Our withdrawal from empire, largely because of our own improvidence, was reckless as well as chaotic, and left much blood on the walls.
Graham Hurley, author
The Tinderbox manages remarkably to cover the prickly topic of the Arab-Israeli conflict with a sense of balance and diversity of perspectives that is not often seen. The research, details and perspectives presented stand out both in scope and accuracy, as it delicately balances an extremely contentious topic. Beyond the interviews, The Tinderbox also makes great cinematic use of archival footage, adding a visual layer to this film that sets it above other documentaries that have attempted to cover this topic.
Isaac Zablocki, Executive Director, Other Israel Film Festival
(The film) is not judgmental and does not tell you what to think about the realities of the conflict. That is up to you, the viewer, to make your own mind up. However, it tells you how to think because Gillian speaks to many Palestinian Arabs and Israeli Jews as they express their own widely divergent - but at times also surprisingly convergent - viewpoints. The 90 minutes or so give you the space to draw your own conclusions.
Dr. Harry Hagopian, Middle East Council of Churches; lawyer, dispute resolution expert, writer
Gillian Mosely’s harrowing film demonstrates with tragic near-perfection Faulkner’s observation that not only is the past not dead; it's not even past.
Claude Goldenberg, Professor of Education, Emeritus, in the Graduate School of Education, Stanford University
We will never see peace until we address the roots of this conflict.