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Documentary Review: VICE on HBO: Palestine + Cuba (hosted by Shane Smith)


There are many documentary films that open your eyes and bring you details and information that your local News TV channel won’t tell ever! VICE on HBO this time brings two of the hottest subjects, Palestine Now and Viva Cuba Libre. Both countries are unlike each other and try to make their own way towards the bright future. While Cuba through music and cultural education was able to do so, Palestine seems to be stuck back in time where there’s no way out of the blood that’s being shed on the streets of the West Bank.

VICE correspondent Ahmed Shihab-Eldin speaks with Palestinian protestors in Ramallah, West Bank. Photo credit: Jackson Fager for VICE on HBO.

VICE correspondent Ahmed Shihab-Eldin speaks with Palestinian protestors in Ramallah, West Bank. Photo credit: Jackson Fager for VICE on HBO.

The first part of VICE on HBO, hosted by Ahmed Shihab-Eldin, takes you to Palestine where you will get a chance to see the young Palestinians growing up in the West Bank. “Before we investigate uprisings against the Jews, we should start with our own authorities”, states unnamed young man to the camera. While the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian people has been locked in a cycle of violence for generations, it seems, now, after so many decades the youngsters are finally ready to fight against their own corrupted government. As you watch it, you will find Ahmed Shihab-Eldin reporting right from the heart of Bethlehem, Hebron, Ramallah, and East Jerusalem to explore so-called life of young Palestinians in 2016.

 Cars drive down the street in Havana, Cuba. Photo credit: Jake Burghart for VICE on HBO

Cars drive down the street in Havana, Cuba. Photo credit: Jake Burghart for VICE on HBO

The second part of VICE, Viva Cuba Libre is hosted by Shane Smith, the co-founder and CEO of VICE takes you to Cuba, where you will be able to see the great example of effectiveness of dialogues and diplomacy that now Cubans can celebrate. On March 21st, President Obama became the first sitting American President to visit Cuba in nearly 90 years. His historical trip was the part of his campaign to prove that it’s possible to engage a new relationship with longtime adversaries by renewing dialogues. Moreover, Cubans share with Shane Smith how music, culture, movies showed them the way the rest of the world lives, and more importantly, helped them to build a bridge between Cuba and the United States.

In conclusion, in this episode of VICE you will see how young people try to advance their lives. One learns hip-hop music and American culture, while the other one fights with tear gas against Israeli soldiers or against their own government. It’s pitiful to see how Palestine, having so much potential to grow still can’t do anything due to life under occupation and corruption. Of course, if learning Western Culture or foreign language could help them to achieve what Cubans have achieved recently, all Palestinians would have made the study of foreign culture the meaning of their lives. But as you know, nothing is that easy. Not for Palestinians at least. Let’s hope that another leader from advanced country will stand and say: “Enough is enough”. But until that day comes, nothing seems will help Palestinians to live their lives to the fullest, but just exist.

* Episode trailer: http://bit.ly/22xWG1U
* Palestinian youth clashing with Israeli soldiers in Hebron: http://bit.ly/25nBYAy
* Shane Smith interviews Josefina Vidal: http://bit.ly/1VJhCO5
* Shane Smith interviews Ben Rhodes: http://bit.ly/21IUoqN
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About Ulkar Alakbarova (1067 Articles)
My name is Ulkar Alakbarova. A wonderful name, is it not? I come from the exotic land of Azerbaijan but now I live in the hub of Hollywood North – Toronto, Canada. How lucky I am to be able to enjoy and indulge in my favourite avocation of watching movies. Movies of every genre are screened here in Toronto. There are black and white classics, avant garde, independently produced, and of course, newly released movies for all to enjoy. Let me share this treasure of entertainment with you. Read my thoughts and opinions then let me know if you agree.

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