Lemon Tree

Lemon Tree

Eran Riklis (2008)

PG Certificate


Our Score
In this poignant but unduly optimistic parable, director Eran Riklis returns to a theme from previous movies Cup Final (1991) and The Syrian Bride (2004), namely that Palestinians and Israelis have just as many similarities as differences. Palestinian widow Salma (Hiam Abbass) insists on fighting her corner after the lemon grove she inherited from her father is fenced off to increase security around her new neighbour, the Israeli defence minister (Doron Tavory). However, she struggles to get support from the male leaders of her own community when she begins romancing a maverick lawyer (Ali Suliman), and only her neighbour's neglected wife (Rona Lipaz-Michael) seems to understand her frustration in the face of such cross-cultural chauvinistic oppression. Exuding dignity and intelligence, Abbas is superb in the lead, and cameraman Rainer Klausmann's symbolic images of the sun-scorched West Bank landscape add real texture to the story. But this isn't the subtlest or deepest examination of an intractable crisis and, while Riklis strives to maintain an admirable impartiality, his direction is highly manipulative.


A Palestinian widow stands her ground when the security perimeter of the neighbouring Israeli defence minister's compound encroaches on her lemon grove. She decides to take the fight to the Supreme Court, where her case attracts support from an unlikely source. Drama, starring Hiam Abbass, Doron Tavory, Ali Suliman, Rona Lipaz-Michael and Tarik Kopty. In Arabic, Hebrew and English.

Cast & Crew

Salma Zidane Hiam Abbass
Mira Navon Rona Lipaz-Michael
Ziad Daud Ali Suliman
Defense Minister Israel Navon Doron Tavory
Abu Hussam Tarik Kopty
Captain Jacob Amos Lavi
Leibowitz Amnon Wolf
Tamar Gera Smadar Jaaron
Private Quickie Danny Leshman
Sigi Navon Hili Yalon
Director Eran Riklis
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Other Information

Language: Arabic, Hebrew, English +subtitlesColourTheatrical distributor: Unanimous FilmsGuidance: Swearing.Available on: DVDReleased on: 12 Dec 2008