Israeli animation unedited – Closed Zone by Yoni Goodman

Freedom of speech in Israel


Recently, Israeli animation movies are enjoying popularity inside and outside Israel thanks to two important anti-Israeli propaganda animated films made in Israel: Waltz with Bashir and Closed Zone.

One of the most interesting directors of animation these days is Israeli Yoni Goodman, known as the head animator from “Waltz with Bashir”. The acclaimed Israeli animated feature won six Israeli Academy Awards, including Best Movie, and the Golden Globe for Best Foreign Film. The animated film was a nominee at the 2009 American Academy Awards for Best Foreign Film, and was a featured showing at the Cannes Film Festival. The film was first banned in Lebanon but then converted to an underground hit.

“Waltz with Bashir” is an animated, documentary-style story of director Ari Folmans journey around the world to interview old friends and fellow soldiers as he tries to reclaim his memories of the time he spent on an Israeli Army mission during the 1982 Lebanon War.

Yoni Goodman began his career as illustrator and designer for ‘Maariv’ and ‘Haaretz’, two mayor Israeli newspapers. While studying in the department of Visual Communication of the Bezalel Academy of Art and Design in Jerusalem, he fell in love with animation and hasn´t stopped making it since.

Recently he made a short animated film Closed Zone to highlight the continued blockade of the Gaza Strip and its 1.5 million Palestinian residents. The short film is produced by Gisha, an Israeli human rights organisation that focuses on the right to freedom of movement for Palestinians.

Goodman said he began the film before Israel launched its offensive against Gaza’s ruling Hamas militants in December 2008, but the conflict affected the story.

The film, a combination of animation and real-life scenes, follows a boy chasing a blue bird while large hands block his way. The hands cut Gaza’s borders in the ground with a giant cookie-cutter, then prevent the boy from crossing.

Watch the eloquent illustration of the impact of Israel’s closure policy in the Gaza Strip here.

An interesting interview with Yoni Goodman can be found here.


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