Euthanasia is controversial and opinion dividing in several countries, but the makers of Israeli movie, “The Farewell Party” are hoping the jury at Venice agree on its the film’s merits.
It centers on a group of Jerusalem retirement-home residents who create a euthanasia machine to put a dying friend out of his misery — they then face a moral dilemma when others come seeking the same service.
Though Israel’s film industry is vibrant for a country its size, it is often overshadowed but the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Actor Ilan Dar says it is a story everyone can relate to: “It’s a weird story of love between people, old people. And love exists, even when you are 70, you still love people and you want to help them. And it’s such a human story that is universal.”
The film stars veteran Israeli actors who had to deal with the delicate question of euthanasia in a country where assisted suicide remains illegal.
Actress Levana Finkelstein believes everyone should be free to choose on how they end their days.
“You don’t know until you touch the minute that you make such a decision. Otherwise, I don’t know how I personally will behave if, God forbid, but I think everybody has to choose the way they choose and that’s the freedom of everybody.”
“The Farewell Party” has been well received by audiences and critics and it is a strong contender to be nominated for Best Foreign Film at next year’s Oscars.