Sunday, April 17, 2005

04.17.05 DocAviv: But I Just Got Here!

My last few days in Israel were so awesome--just in time to make me really sad to leave. When I departed after the initial shooting trip, I knew that I would eventually be coming back to Israel to screen Jericho's Echo, but this time I was just being reminded of how much I care about so many of the people in the film when I had to pack up and leave...and I really don't know when or if I will ever see some of them again. I left with a heavy heart, but also with the feeling that I am lucky to have made my first feature about such a generally cool group of people, and that I definitely want to keep making movies!

In a blur of interviews, meetings, and goodbyes a few things stand out. People have been asking about these mysterious "meetings" but there is not much to report yet. I basically made it my business to get copies of the movie into the hands of people from almost every major TV network in Israel in the hopes that it will get picked up for Israeli broadcasting, so I will keep you posted on that. I also talked to some cool guys (Harry and Jeremy) involved in promoting alternative views of Israel in worldwide media, about how we could scratch each other's backs. Some interesting possibilities there.

The good stuff, as always, is the band stuff, and I got plenty of that in my last couple days. I was running around trying to interview as many of the original "characters" from the movie as I could before leaving the country, and although I didn't hit *everybody* there will be plenty of great material for the "Updates" section of the DVD. On the second-to-last night the theme was Dizengoff street punks as I did the follow-ups with Lital, Dennis and Tom from Smash4$ and Assi and Ori from Chaos Rabak. I was a bit intimidated to meet Lital, as she seems like such a tough girl in the movie (After all, she is the one that admits,"I like to fight once in a while."). However, just like everyone else, she was super nice and seeing her snuggle with her little kitten and her live-in boyfriend Amos (the same one she is seen with in a few b-roll shots in the movie) broke down any potential misconceptions. She is now 19-years-old and she and Amos are talking about marriage. He even has a tattoo picturing two skulls with mohawks and the word "FOREVER." The two skulls, of course, represent himself and Lital. Romance, punk style.

(Lital and Amos)

After Lital, I went over to Dennis and Tom's to finally do their interview. I say "finally" because although I saw them more than pretty much anyone else, we didn't do their interview until my second-to-last night in town. This was partly because I knew I would see them so there was no rush to do it but also because the interviews all felt kind of final and I didn't really want to admit that I'd have to say goodbye to them. When I spoke above about the people I was sad to say goodbye to, these guys are definitely at the top of the list. The interview was really funny. In fact, a lot of the follow-up interviews have been funny. A lot of the punks said to me that the movie was "too serious," and that although they do plenty of it in the movie, they don't really discuss politics in their every day lives. I think Dennis and Tom especially were trying to make up for the seriousness of the movie by being hilarious in their follow-up interview. They even had Kafel, the Smash4$ bass player, turn the camera on me for some questions, mostly involving whether or not I thought they could get laid if their band came to the U.S. I'm a lot more comfortable *behind* the camera but I think they wanted to give me a taste of my own medicine!

Next in line was Ori, from Chaos Rabak. He is the one whose mohawk silhouette is pictured on the website and t-shirts of the movie. He works the nightshift alone at the "Shakespree," conveniently located between Lital and Smash4$'s apartments and right around the corner from Avital's where I was staying. The Shakespree is a venerable institution known for smashing a variety of tasty toppings into frozen yogurt and shakes and serving it up in a big plastic cup. The Shakespree stands are open all night long and I can't even imagine the amount of money they've lost for all of the free shakes given to the punk rockers of the Sheinkin/Hamelech George area. It turns out that for Ori, not much has changed since the movie was shot. Chaos Rabak broke up and he is now in a new band with the lovely title "The Testicles." It was another funny interview, anyway, and I hope it turns out allright depsite the loud hum of all the machines involved in making the perfect milkshake. While I was there, Assi from Chaos Rabak (the one with the religious brother) showed up and so I interviewed him as well. As I mentioned in one of the earlier posts, he is taking an audio engineering course. He is a really smart guy and I think he has more potential than almost any of the street punks to make a good future for himself.

Later that night (technically early the following morning) I said goodnight to Dennis and went out with Tom and his cool new girlfriend Markiela (sp?) to a bar that plays electroclash music. Shmida and Amit from HaPussy shel Lussy and Yonantan Gatt from Punkache were all there on their own really is a small country. Slept for a few hours and then met up with an Israeli producer who is willing to help me with some negotiations with TV stations. He had just returned from the MIP film market in France that morning and was also operating on only a few hours sleep, so I think it went well!

After trying all week, I finally managed to arrange a meeting and hummus eating extravaganza with the infamous Gutzy (the kid sitting in the grass in the film, who has also acted as a production assistant for the past year). We combined his intervew with Nadav, Yotam from Useless ID's little brother. Both of them have grown up a lot since I was here last. Nadav is looking so much like the Yotam I first met when Useless ID came to the states 7 or 8 years ago. Bravo, genetics! We did the interview in the men's bathroom of some seemingly abandoned building near the Patiphone. It was funny and looked very punk rock. Nadav is 17 now and Gutzy is 20. Gutzy did not end up joining the military, and he is still playing in bands and running the Israeli punk website He is also an incredibly talented graphic designer and I hope he gets off of his punk ass and does something worthwhile with has mad skills one of these days. He did not end up joining the army, by the way. He *did* go on tour in Europe as the fill-in guitarist for the female hardcore band Va'adat Kishut though. The interviews were great because Gutzy is pretty aware of everything that goes on in the scene, so he was able to update me on almost every band and person from the movie. This will be a handy overview for the DVD. After the interview, we went on a mad hunt all over Tel Aviv for a dish of hummus. The first two places we went to were closed for Shabbat--oh yeah, another reminder of the whole "Jewish country" thing (See previous post)--and we finally found some that was good enough to leave me farting for the rest of the night. (Sorry, mom!)

(Me, Gutzy and Hummus)

The last interview I did before leaving was another combo of people from different bands. This seemed really appropriate because it's a reminder of what a small scene it is and that, despite different political leanings, most people are essentially friends with each other. This time it was Ron from Soon In Here (the guy who says that the scene has grown a lot since his band has been together) and Yaniv from Nikmat Olalim (the young political hardcore band). Once again I was reminded of what an all-around nice group of people the Israeli punks are, no matter where they fall in the wide spectrum of music styles and political beliefs. Soon in Here recently broke up, but both Soon in Here and Nikmat Olalim had toured Europe since we shot the original footage. I think that going abroad changed or enhanced both of their perspectives on Israel. Both of the guys are originally from Kfar Saba (20 mins. North of Tel Aviv) and are now working on setting up a D.I.Y. venue/youth center in their hometown. Between Giora's venue in south Tel Aviv, HaPussy's Pitch Studios, the Tel Aviv squat protests, and talk of this Kfar Saba venue, it was exciting to see how active the Israeli scene has become in creating its own system of venues and spaces since we originally shot the film.

My trip closed appropriately with a show at the Patiphone, where I got to see Gutzy and Nadav's new hardcore band, Hikokiri, and some of the set of a band called "Brutal Polka." I also got to say goodbye to my new friend Michi, along with Gutzy, Becker, Corey, Nadav, Ron, Yaniv, and of course Dennis. A nice roundup of the past few days of activity. I then went off to spend a last couple of precious hours with the Amazing Avital, to whom I owe this entire project. I couldn't have done it without you, girl.

I don't know if anyone from the bands are going to read this blog, but if so I must say a HUGE THANKS to all of you for your kindness and generosity and for being SO FUCKING COOL and I hope that even if you don't completely understand my intentions right now, you will one day be as proud to have been a part of Jericho's Echo as I am to have made it. TODAH RABAH to all of you MOTEKS!!›

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

04.13.05 DocAviv: Hope

In an earlier post I mentioned how crazy it is to be reminded every so often here in Israel that it actually *is* a warzone. On the flipside, there are also those little things here that remind you that Judaism is an undeniable part of modern Israeli culture, and for me that can be a good reminder. Earlier tonight I flipped on the TV while waiting for yet another band who flaked on an interview (I am having flashbacks to 2003) and a very funny ad came on. There's a group of shady, Italian-looking gangsters on a city street and one of them gets a phone call. The others are up in arms and ready to pounce, but he calms them down, saying something like,"It's Moshe, from the kibbutz. He says 'Chag Sameach.' " (Chag Sameach=Happy Holidays, referring to the upcoming Passover festivities.) For me, this was absolutely amazing--such a mix of absolutely mainstream popular culture and references to a Jewish holiday. An ad like that would never, ever air in the States. This ain't no Adam Sandler's "Chanukah Song." Now, the discussion of whether or not the commercialization of spirituality is a good thing is another story but still, coming from a country where STATUS=BEING ON TV and Jews are such a tiny minority, I couldn't help finding this little episode kind of cool. In the States, there are plenty of people who have never even met a Jew, and here everyone knows what Passover is, regardless of whether or not they actually observe the holiday.

(Retribution with Ashi from at the DocAviv screening)

On that note, I did the follow-up interview with the proudly Jewish band Retribution earlier tonight (who, by the way, are total hessians--as evidenced by their new bass player wearing a cut-off sleeved Pantera shirt with a huge pot leaf on it). I went to their rehearsal and got to hear how they've re-worked some of their songs since their original filming. Apparently, they have taken a long break while re-arranging members and now are back on the scene. So the interview got around to the current political situation and there was an interesting debate among the band. I said that it seemed more hopeful now than 2 years ago, and the first response was that hope is impossible in Israel because every time you get hopeful, those hopes are crushed. Another band member disagreed. "Since the beginning of time," the robust metalhead explained,"where there have been Jews, there has been hope."

04.13.05 DocAviv: Ayfo Atem Achshav?

There is much to report as always from the past couple of action packed days--business meetings, film festival shenanigans, and of course late night drinking (AKA the national pasttime of the Israeli punk).

Above and beyond all of these activites are the bands--that's the important stuff. I've gotten a couple of really positive comments from some of them since that initial release of criticism. Also, even the bands who did the most complaining all admitted that they had fun at the screening and it was cool to see themselves and all of their friends on screen. Someone called the event "a punk rock reunion." So I'm definitely feeling better. Tsahi from Retribution (the right-wing band) wrote me a nice email, excerpted here:

"Don't mind what people told you we all thought that the movie was great and we are very proud about the way you described our small scene, you made us look great, justthat some people got to say somthing or they will feel less important."

It was a very sweet gesture, but I also found it funny because those words would just add to the list of offenses by him and his band against the "left-wingers". Good thing Retribution are big guys.

Shmida from Hapussy explained that though the film might not be as interesting for the Israeli punks themselves, he was trying to watch it from the perspective of an American or British person who "thinks if they step off the plane in Israel all they will see is camels." He could see the value of the film for that audience, who is, after all, the intended one. The past couple days have also re-affirmed the notion that every comment on the movie has to be taken with a grain of salt, as people interpret it in their own ways depending on their own biases, etc. One example--someone at the first screening complained that I showed too many "touristy" areas of Tel Aviv, and last night Roy from Punkache suggested I showed too many slums. So, what can you do excpet (as I said in an earlier post) to trust your own instincts?

Anyway, one of my main tasks whil I am in town is to do follow-up interviews with as many bands from the movie as possible while I am in town. Since I originally shot almost two years ago, much has changed, and everyone always asks me WHERE ARE THEY NOW? After all, two years is a big gap when you're talking between the ages of 18 and 20. So far, I've only shot these interviews with HaPussy shel Lussy (former singer killed in suicide bombing) and Punkache (3 funny guys on couch.) Tonight should be a busy one, as I am scheduled to shoot Retribution, Gutzy, Nikmat Olalim and Lital.

I'll write more detailed updates about everyone later but here's a quickie of the bands so far. HaPussy have opened a recording studio and rehearsal space only for underground bands to use--something almost unprecedented in Tel Aviv. They said that a lot of people have gotten more active in the scene and in building a sustainable community that exists outside of the mainstream. Awesome.

Harpak from Punkache is currently on tour with Useless ID in Australia (!!) and Roy and Gatt are as funny as ever. Roy is done with the army and has already served his reserve service once. He is teaching cinema in high school and doing graphic design--who knew we had so much in common? Gatt has his own apartment where we did the interview and although he quit managing the Patiphone he is working and playing bass in a few local bands.

More soon...

Monday, April 11, 2005

04.10.05 DocAviv: Napping in a Bomb Shelter

After all the time I've spent in Israel, I still get shocked by those small reminders of ongoing war. For instance, at the second night's screening, my view of the film was obstructed by the HUGE rifle on the lap of the teenager sitting in front of me. Avital told me that soldiers are required to carry their weapons with them if they have no place to lock them up at home. I don't think anyone in the theatre even looked twice at this large weapon, but I could not take my eyes off of it.

Meanwhile, earlier that day I took one of the best naps ever in Avital's room. It was good because, despite the ever-present street noise of Tel Aviv, her room was completely dark and quiet--womb-like, even. This seemed like a pretty amazing set-up, until she told me that it is that way because the room doubles as a bomb shelter, as required by Israeli law. Hmmm. It was a little harder to get comfy in there after that bit of knowledge was dropped.

So...let's get back to the screenings. Last you heard, I was feeling pretty bummed out despite the apparent huge success of the opening. Well, I've had a couple days to get some perspective and I'm feeling much better. The second night's screening was very different, in that it was MUCH mellower. It was also sold out (wahoo!) but it was in the smaller theatre. A few of the bands that hadn't seen it the night before came, but not being the political hardcore bands, they were a little more forgiving. My aforementioned friends Dennis and Tom from Smash4$ brought their crew, and I got to see some others for the first time, namely Dafna from Beer7 and Roy and Yonatan Gatt from Punkache (the funny guys on the couch). Dafna is in the army right now, working on the army radio station--a perfect post for her. It was awesome to see the Punkache guys again and I will be meeting up with them later in the week. Now that Roy is out of the Army, he grew his hair all crazily and he looks adorable.

(Me with Dennis, Tom and Kaffel from Smash4$ at Screening # 2. There's Mobuis from Jewschool in the background, too!)

Before the screening, I went to a political hardcore show at a new D.I.Y veue run in part by Giora from Nikmat Olalim (the young, left-wing band). The show was partially sponsored by the group of girls called something like "the Vegan Sisterhood" and it was really cute for me--sort of like looking into a mirror from 10 years ago. It's funny because the people who I have become really friendly with from the movie are mostly *not* from this activist/hardcore scene, and yet this is the scene that I can relate most closely to as far as my own background. They are just so cynical (and young) that it seems they aren't willing to believe that we have anything in common.

Anyway, at the show I got more of a chance to talk with Tal from Nikmat Olalim who was one of the people I was referring to when I mentioned bands that seemed disappointed in the film. It was good because he opened up a bit about what his specific issues were with it and I felt much better. Hopefully he did, too.

Saturday, April 09, 2005

04.09.05 DocAviv: The Morning After...

It was a bit like a one-night-stand when you have a really good time but he/she doesn't call in the morning and you wonder if you did the right thing...

There is so much to report from the past two emotionally-rollercoastery days but I'll skip ahead to what everyone surely wants to were the screenings? And the answer is that I am still figuring out how I feel, but I can list a whole mixture of adjectives--exciting, scary, difficult, fun. I can also say that I am very excited to SLEEP tonight because it's been a couple of looooong days.

(The Tel Aviv Cinematheque has never seen a crowd like *this* before!)

On the surface, the screenings were a huge success. Both nights were completely full, and the fine folks from DocAviv were thrilled. Apparently, it was one of if not *the* best selling film of the festival. Wow. The energy at the first night's screening was amazing. So many of the punks from the movie were there, along with some surprise guests like Shira Ginsburg who I knew from summer camp, haven't seen in 13 or so years, and is now studying to be a chazzanit in Jerusalem; and Dotan Goren, an Israeli who I was with on a tiny island in Greece when the World Trade Center was hit.

There was at least one member from almost every band at the opening night, and it was so fun to hear people react when they or their friends first showed up on the screen...laughing, clapping, shouting. And they didn't stop reacting--left wing bands booed at right wing bands and vice versa. I thought there might be a fight at one point! It was really interesting for me to witness the crowd's reactions also because they were almost completely opposite from the reactions to the film so far in the US--the parts where people in the US are laughing out loud were silent here, and other parts that I never even thought were funny had people rolling on the floor!

(The Cinematheque's lobby after our screening. Hey! There's Lital and Nikmat Olalim's Tal from the movie.)

So it seemed all good--and then came the Q &A. I should have known what to expect. Like they say, "Where there are 2 Jews there are 3 opinions." Add a good dose of Israeli cynicism and you're fucked. It was so different from the generally mild-mannered Q&As in the states. I felt like I was on trial at the Supreme Court--I spent half an hour hearing everything that was wrong with the film. Of course, to put it in perspective, it was mostly the political punks who were commenting, and it is their job to be anti-everything, right?

One thing very sweet that happened was, after the Q&A when loads of people were coming up to me and saying nice things (why do they say the nice things in private and the neagtive things in public?), one of the band member's mothers came to me and said that she enjoyed the movie, and she apologized on behalf of the audience. Her explanation was that it is part of Israeli culture--that even the religious people in the yeshivot
are encouraged to question and argue with the head rabbis. Another post-show highlight was meeting Steve's awesome 13-year-old punk rock-miniature-Ramones cousin and his dad. His dad came up to me and said that he finally understood where his son was coming from. Awesome.

So anyway, the Q&A was uncomfortable but manageable. The thing that really broke my heart was talking to some of the bands afterwards. Don't get me wrong--some of them seemed to like it. But others seemed quite disappointed. I'm sure it's a combination of the film being not exactly what they expected and feeling self-conscious about being on the big screen and the fact that it was shot 2 years ago and a lot has changed since then. But still, the last thing I wanted to do was disappoint them.

In the morning, I felt like shit. I just kept thinking about it and trying to regain trust in mine and Steve and Joseph's original instincts about what to shoot and how to present the scene. I had a great "therapy session" with Avital, who, as a professional musician, was a good authority on how to deal with criticism. She said that if she gives a performance and evryone says wonderful things but *one person* says something negative, it ruins it for her. So she kinda knew how I felt.

Avital deserved this fancy "thank-you" dinner!

I think in the end the kids will be proud to be part of the movie, and when they get a chance to think about it and realize that a documentary is just a slice of life that can't possibly cover everything, and that this film was not intended as a celebration of their scene (although it is that in some ways), but as a tool to show Americans and Europeans another side of Israeli life, they will come around. In the meantime, I told them that they will all get a chance to air their grievances on camera and update us about what has changed in the last 2 years, because I brought my equipment and am going to shoot some material for the DVD.

So I haven't even gotten to the second screening yet and I can't imagine you're still reading this. Furthermore, the beach is calling my name! So get ready for the next installment which is when I tell you how everything turned out OK and I'm feeling much better now.

Friday, April 08, 2005

04.08.05 DocAviv: The Big Night

I am sitting on Avital(my lovely, generous host)'s balcony in my underwear, eatting hummus as only Israelis make it, looking down on Tel Aviv's hipsters flirting by on the street below and out further to the sea that laps up against the city's shore, and I'm thinking,"My life is pretty fucking sweet right now."

I am also remembering why I'm SO BAD at keeping a blog! I just get too caught up in what's going on to stop and write it down. My first couple of days in Tel Aviv have been great. The festival premiere of Jericho's Echo is tonight (eeek!) and I am getting super excited, especially cuz I've already gotten to see some of my favorite people from the bands and of course Avital and Ari (my friends from Boston who both live in TA and have been integral to this project) and so the buzz is going on. It sounds like a lot of cool people are gonna be there.

I'll start with the less-than-good news, which is that the festival people waited until I arrived to tell me that the high-end PAL version of my tape that I spent a lot of $$ making and shipping to them doesn't play properly and they'll have to screen the movie from the DVD. This sucks on a couple levels...first of all, the DVD just won't look nearly as good on the big screen and secondly if I had known about the problem before I came to Israel then I could have done something about it. Oh well, if this is the worst that happens, then I am in pretty good shape.

My first night in town, I went to hang out with Dennis and Tom from Smash4$ (the two guys with mohawks sitting on the bed) and some of the other kids from the street punk scene. Dennis is one of the people I've kept in closest contact with since I was here shooting so I was totally psyched to see him. It was pretty surreal for me because we met up in the park where I orginally shot the interview with Choas Rabak and everyone was sitting on the same wall where we did it. I have been looking at that wall for two years, editing through Chaos Rabak's interview, so it was funny to be back there in "real life." Almost like walking on to a movie set only to discover it's actually your own neighborhood. It all looked pretty much the same--a bunch of kids with colored hair and tattoos, drinking Gold Star outside in the middle of the night.Only they are all wearing more clothes now because it's not summer.

Assi from Chaos Rabak (the guy with the religious brother) was also there which was a nice surprise for me. He told me that Choas Rabak actually broke up after about a 5-year-run and he is taking a course in audio engineering. He wants to do sound for bands and movies and stuff. That's awesome. It didn't seem that anyone else was getting particularly ambitious, though they all have slightly better jobs than when I was here last. Kaban from Chaos Rabak (the guy who went to jail because he wouldn't shave his mohawk) also pulled up on his Vespa eventually. He is now playing in the "Dead Rabins." Sound familar? Perhaps you've heard of the Dead Kennedys! Kaban is as full of life as I remembered. Everyone else is pretty jaded or jaded-acting but this guy just comes tooting up on his little Vespa and laughs the night away.

Yesterday I had a beer with Dennis at the beach and we got to catch up a little more in person. Even though he kicked my butt at air hockey, I really love him. He is truly a mensch with a mohawk. He was telling me about jumping out of airplanes when he was in the army, and now how he has been excused from his reserve service (Israeli men have to serve one month a year until they're around 40.) as he has been classified as a drunk. What a country.

The evening's activities included the opening night of the festival, with filmmaker introductions, wine, and of course--movies! It was kind of an underwhelming opening night to be honest--but my expectations were probably too high. The 2 films were "39 pounds of love" which just got picked up by HBO (lucky bastards!) and "shape of the moon" which was apparently a big hit at sundance and amsterdam. i wasn't in love with either one but it was interesting to see them in juxtaposition, as "39..." has a highly structured--almost contrived--storyline and "shape..." is completely verite with no narration or interviews. it is exciting to see how the documentary format is opening up. Also, I met a cool young filmmaker from Belgium named Stephane whose film I am going to try to catch tonight before mine.

I was so tired by the end of the films, but Avital convinced me to act like an Israeli and stay the hell awake! She reasoned that I am probably going to be up all night for the net two so I might as well get used to it. WHat a clever girl! So I met up with some of the guys from the band HaPussy shel Lussy, who are into the club scene in addition to being pivotal members of the punk scene. This never happens in the states--the two scenes are entirely separate. HaPussy is one of the bands that Steve interviewed so I had not met them in person yet. I hung out with Shmida,Amit and Gofen and they were soooo cool. Their understanding of the punk rock world is much closer to what mine has always been than most of the other punks here. They are all about working together to bring about change and to operate outside "the system." I will definitely hang out with them more while I am in town.

OK, so it's getting close to showtime. WISH ME LUCK!!!!

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

04.06.05 DocAviv: I made it

Dear Mom and Dad,
I arrived safely in Israel.
You can get some rest now.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

04.05.05 DocAviv: Damn Amsters!

I was laugh-out-loud happy to arrive in Amsterdam today en route to Tel Aviv. I am now in the airport waiting for the next leg, but let me just say that there is just about nowhere that I'd rather have a 9-hour layover than this beautiful city. And it's not just that they serve hot french fries in paper cones, covered with homemade mayo, in the airport!

Being here, even just for a half-day, brings back so many wonderful memories of my 2001 European travels and definitely bites me with the travel bug again. This is a good thing, since I hope to be travelling a lot with Jericho's Echo in the next year.

The city of Amsterdam itself is just amazing. All I need to say to prove this is that in most cities kids get arrested for skateboarding on public property. Amsterdam, on the other hand, has a GIGANTIC HALF PIPE right smack in the middle of the Museum Square area--one of the most heavily touristed parts of town. I am totally down. But my excitement didn't really come from the city itself--it's that exhilaration you get when you step out onto the sidewalk of a new place and the world seems full of possibility.

Saturday, April 02, 2005

04.02.05 DocAviv: Holy Land, Here I Come... Again

I am soooooo excited. I'll be leaving in a couple days to head back to Israel for the offical festival premiere of Jericho's Echo. Those of you who have been following the film's progress and holding my hand in some way for the past two years (thank you! thank you! thank you!) know that this is like coming full circle for the project. We shot the film in Tel Aviv, and I can think of no better place for its international coming out party than DocAviv, the Tel Aviv International Documentary Festival.

If you scroll down you'll see that we're also coming full circle with this here blog. It was originally used to document my first shooting trip to Israel, and now it's gonna follow the film on all of its wild travels. I am psyched to look back on it myself and remember, as I am seeing the guys in all the Israeli punk bands anew, what it was like when we first met!
It is going to be so crazy...some of them were only 15 when I shot the film and I have been looking at their 15-year-old faces for 2 years during editing. Suddenly, I'm gonna go back and they will all be 2 years older and have facial hair and shit! There is a big difference between 15 and 17 or 18 and 20--espeically in Israel.

The screenings in Tel Aviv will be the first time any of the bands are seeing the film. I CAN'T WAIT to see their reactions and hear what they have to say about it all. I am just so excited to see them all anyway, and to meet the bands that Steve interviewed for the first time (I interviewed most of the bands myself, but when I sent Steve back to get some more footage for me, he got some really crucial pieces of the puzzle, like HaPussy shel Lussy and Lital) . I feel like I know them so well...but really I only know a 2-year-old snapshot of them, and they have never even met me!

So--thanks for coming along for the ride. It should be AN ADVENTURE!

Pic from the San Francisco Sneak Preview Screening