DEFAMATION tackles the subject of the American and Israeli industries of combatting antisemitism. Being an Israeli jew and never having experienced antisemitism first hand, filmmaker Yaov Shamir sets out on a journey to better understand why the Israeli media portray antisemitism as a global force of nature constantly threatening the existence of the Jewish people. DEFAMATION is a funny and surprisingly nuanced take on a subject that is as old as it is depressingly relevant.
Yoam Shamir is an Israeli director and cinematographer. He was born in Tel-Aviv in November 1970. He graduated with honors from the University of Tel-Aviv with a BA in history and Philosophy, and an MFA in Cinema. In 2001 he made his first film, MARTA AND LUIS (2001). With CHECKPOINT (2003), he made the first film of a trilogy made in the wrong order, which he completed with FLIPPING OUT (2007) and this year’s DEFAMATION (2009). All three films focuse on the way young Israelis are raised in the cumbersome shadow of the Holocaust: CHECKPOINT, about Israeli soldiers; FLIPPING OUT, about what happens to these soldiers after they leave the army; and DEFAMATION, which examines Israeli youth before they begin their military service.