Ameer Got His Gun

What to make of Ameer Abu Ria, an 18-year-old Arab-Israeli who volunteers to enlist in the Israeli military? Following in the footsteps of his father and grandfather, Ameer believes it’s his duty to serve his homeland. At the same time, he is waking up to the fact that he will always be viewed as an outsider or worse by the young men he will serve with. At home in Sakhnin, Ameer and his family—who fly an Israeli flag on their roof—are viewed as traitors. One of the most heartbreaking scenes in this gripping documentary is Ameer’s pre-induction party; the family spends all day preparing, but hardly any guests show up. Filmmaker Naomi Levari gained unprecedented access, following Ameer through his basic training and assignment in Hebron, and tells his story with unflinching candor. “There’s one thing Jews and Arabs must know,” says Ameer. “We’re cousins.” Unfortunately, nothing about Ameer’s story is that simple.
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