On Demand

Ken, tov, beseder

by b.h. Yael
A allegorical short film that follows a Palestinian man's journey from West Jerusalem across a 62 year history of Israel's occupation of Palestine.
2010  ·  5m  ·  Israel, Palestine
Arabic, English, Hebrew
About the Film

KEN, TOV, BESEDERis a constructed short narrative piece, both allegorical and literal. A Palestinian man working in his garden in West Jerusalem is interrupted. The phone rings, and through the whole piece, as he walks out of his home, through Jerusalem streets, past the Damascus gate, out past settlements and the wall, he is speaking on the phone saying, “Ken, tov, beseder.” “Yes, good, alright.”

At times acquiescent, at times frustrated, insistent and soothing, he negotiates through these three Hebrew words.   Arriving at a garden store by the side of a road, he stops, looks at the flowers, and says, “Khallas.” (Arabic for “Enough”). 

Cutaways interrupt the man’s journey, images of maps from 1948, 1967, 1977, 1993 and 2002, corresponding to his location and to significant dates in the past 62 year history of Palestine/Israel. The man is walking, as it were, through time and space.

Upcoming Screenings

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About the Director

b.h. Yael

b.h. Yael is a Toronto based filmmaker, video and installation artist. She is Professor of Integrated Media at OCAD University and past Assistant Dean and past Chair of Integrated Media in the Faculty of Art.

Yael is the recent recipient of a Chalmers Fellowship Award and a Toronto Arts Council grant to media artists. Her most recent work, Trading the Future recently won the ‘Audience Award’ at the Ecofilms 2009 festival in Rhodes, Greece, and has also received the ‘Best Humanitarian Observation – Media Matters’ award at the Rivers Edge International Film Festival in Kentucky, USA. Trading the Future is a video essay that questions the inevitability of apocalypse and its repercussions on environmental urgencies.

Yael’s work has exhibited nationally and internationally and has shown in various settings, from festivals to galleries to various educational venues. Her work has been purchased by several universities. Yael’s past film and video work has dealt with issues of identity, authority and family structures, while at the same time addressing the fragmentary nature of memory and belonging. More recent work focuses on activist initiatives, political fear, apocalypse and gender. The work most often involves non-linear and hybrid forms, including dramatized and fictional elements combined with first person narration, autobiographical and documentary perspectives.

Other films by b.h. Yael