Film About Be'er Sheva Terror Attack Wins Best Picture Award

'Death in the Terminal' lauded in Docaviv festival for 'creating a sharp cinematic portrait of Israeli society.'

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Video footage from the October 18, 2015 terror attack in the Be'er Sheva central bus station, during which asylum seeker Haftom Zarhum from Eritrea was mistaken for the assailant, and was shot and brutally attacked while lying bleeding on the floor.
Video footage from the October 18, 2015 terror attack at the Be'er Sheva bus station, showing Zarhum being kicked while lying bleeding on the floor.Credit: Video footage of Be'er Sheva attack
Nirit Anderman
Nirit Anderman

The documentary film “Death in the Terminal,” by Tali Shemesh and Asaf Sudry, won three awards on Wednesday at Tel Aviv's Docaviv festival – Best Picture in the festival’s Israeli film competition, Best Original Score (won by Tomer Yosef and Tom Darom), and the Best Director award from Fedeora – the European Film Critics Federation.

“Death in the Terminal” portrays what happened in the Be’er Sheva Central Bus Station on October 18, 2015 after an armed terrorist entered – an incident that ended with the death of a Golani soldier and an Eritrean national who was mistaken for the terrorist and lynched. The competition’s judges described it as a virtuosic and heartbreaking film.

“The award is being given for the sublime way the film uses apathetic surveillance videos to create a sharp cinematic portrait of Israeli society, which is flooded with messages of racism and incitement during fearful times,” they said.

“We hope the film will send a tearful and sobering message that will help engrave the lynching of Haftom Zarhum on the collective Israeli memory.” The prize carries a cash award of 70,000 shekels (nearly $18,200).

Shemesh has previously directed “The Cemetery Club” and “White Gold, Black Labor,” while Sudry has won two Ophir Awards, for his cinematography on “Fill the Void,” and “Thirst,” and co-directed the documentaries “Strike” with Amir Tausinger and “Paradigma,” with David Ofek.

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