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New York Film Festival 2012: The Gatekeepers
New York Film Festival 2012: The Gatekeepers

The Gatekeepers: New York Film Festival 2012

In protecting the homeland, Israel’s ultrasecret Shin Bet has performed interrogations and assassinations with fearsome reach. Dror Moreh’s...

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In protecting the homeland, Israel’s ultrasecret Shin Bet has performed interrogations and assassinations with fearsome reach. Dror Moreh’s incendiary doc sits down with six former intelligence chiefs, who candidly attest to a sense of guilt. (“We’ve become cruel,” one of them offers, a devastating admission.) There’s plenty of red meat here for viewers skeptical of covert affairs, yet more provocatively, an undeniable sense of competence—even exhilaration—emerges, too, their deadly operations re-created with spooky precision in b&w sequences worthy of a Bourne movie. The film has no easy answers to ethical questions of secrecy and preemptive defense; that’s what makes it essential. Pray that the postscreening Q&As are as thoughtful as these warriors are.—Joshua Rothkopf

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