Partner with the Enemy

This soulful documentary beautifully captures the human cost of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. Kibbutznik Anat Shelach and Ramallah resident Rola Srouji meet through their work for competing logistics companies. Fueled by Rola’s enthusiasm, the women decide to join forces and start a business called Unlimited Logistics Company (ULL), specializing in releasing and transporting Palestinian cargo shipped to Israeli ports. Partner with the Enemy rides on Anat and Rola’s charm—you root for their success, even as their hostile environments threaten to shatter their dreams. The film is full of quietly moving scenes: Rola’s sons marveling at the Edenic lushness and freedom of Kibbutz Mizra, Anat’s speech at the company’s one-year anniversary in which she tells the women’s Arab clients, “This is what peace looks like.” Co-directors Chen Shelach and Duki Dror (My Fantasia, SFJFF 2001; Incessant Visions—Letters from an Architect, SFJFF 2011) give us reason to believe that the world might look different if women and mothers were calling the shots.
Born in Tel Aviv and educated at UCLA and Columbia College in Chicago, Duki Dror has been directing award-winning documentaries since 1992. His first film "Sentenced to Learn," about "lifers" getting schooled in a Chicago penitentiary, was showcased in 1993 by Cinema Du Reel in a retrospective of American Documentary. After living in the US for 8 years, Dror returned to Israel to document Israel's cultural, social and political margins. An important part of Duki Dror's work has been to document the life work of Jewish musicians from the Arab world. In both "Cafe Noah" and "Taqasim," he captures the beauty and depth of classical Arab music. In "My Fantasia," Dror salvages the history of his Iraqi family out of the dominant European Zionist narrative. "Duki Dror disassembles the notion of migration and presents characters that are detached from the mainstream, enclosed in cultural islands." (Ynet).,
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