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TIFF 2016 Review: Forever Pure

Maya Zinshtein’s Forever Pure is a story with no winners and only losers, which I guess is sort of the point of the film, but still feels a little bit limiting, like the top of the summit is impossible to be reached. That being said, there is definitely much to be unpacked in the tale of Beitar Jerusalem Football Club.

The decision to add Chechnyan football players to the club was very poorly received by La Familia, an extremist group of fans who pride themselves on not having a Muslim player on the team. Of course, the message lost on them, and the one illustrated by the movie is that the two Chechnyan players are not Arab, though they are called such throughout.

Obviously, there is more to the story and the parallels between Chechnya and Russia as well as Israel and Palestine could have been explored in greater detail. The film feels troubling as this is a glass half-empty situation, with very little growth or development seeming to have come about as a result.

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