Living and laughing away the early 1980s, the Levis are a large, fun-loving Israeli family—at times quirky, but mostly typical. The children’s father lectures them on the merits of honesty, the mysterious world of succulents and the wonders of the Apollo spacecraft. Their mother irons everyone’s clothes and nourishes their dreams, most keenly supporting her son Ofer’s long-cherished goal of entering the Israeli Army’s elite commando unit. But the simplicity of the Levi family’s existence is shattered when Ofer’s twin brother Erez discovers an explosive secret and unwittingly triggers a family tragedy. The twins’ inseparable relationship undergoes a severe test just as Israel haphazardly enters into its bloodiest and most polarizing conflict to date.
LOST ISLANDS became Israel’s box office hit of 2008, due in part to its deft depiction of an intimate family crisis set against the backdrop of a national drama. For the Levi family, their disillusionment is mirrored in the national unease toward the war in Lebanon, and soon the naive bliss of childhood seems generations past. As the family learns to navigate these choppy waters through difficult compromise and newfound empathy, we are offered a suggestion as to how the wildly complex difficulties of the Middle East also might be eased, if not altogether resolved.