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Film review: ‘The Attack’

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A man must come to terms with his suicide bomber wife’s secret life in The Attack.

Three and a half stars

The Attack Ali Suliman, Evgenia Dodena, Reymond Amsalem. Directed by Ziad Doueiri. Rated R. Opens Friday.

Terrorism is such a politically loaded topic that it’s dangerous to express even a modicum of sympathy or understanding for the people who perpetuate it. Add on a suicide bombing in which children are killed, and it would seem impossible to build a story around the perpetrator that would depict that person as anything other than a monster. But director and co-writer Ziad Doueiri accomplishes just that in The Attack, without endorsing or excusing the act itself. The movie’s main character is Amin (Ali Suliman), an Arab doctor living a comfortable life among Jews in Tel Aviv. When his late wife is accused of having committed a terrible act, he has to come to terms with the secret life she never revealed to him. Although sometimes slow and ponderous, The Attack successfully walks a fine line, examining both sides of a complex issue while remaining focused on Amin’s personal torment, which, like the Middle East conflict itself, has no easy solution.

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