A Palestinian boy sits on a couch in a home in a West Bank refugee camp and says, “I believe all children are innocent.” That’s the sentiment tested in the new documentary film, Promises. We meet seven Israeli and Palestinian children, linked by youth and separated by war. They can talk as passionately about sports as they can about politics. And some find the desire to connect just as strong as the inclination to hate.
Promises, nominated this year for an Academy Award, does not attempt to keep track of daily events or politics. It just follows the way in which the children form their ideas about life and neighbors and peace in a world where the checkpoint becomes symbol and deterrent to an afternoon of play. Close, yet disconnected, are the children of the Holy Land.
B.Z. Goldberg and Justine Shapiro, co-writers, producers and directors of “Promises.”