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Protocols of Zion
Protocols of Zion
Actors: Marc Levin, Al Levin, Alan Levin
Director: Marc Levin
Genres: Documentary, Military & War
R     2006     1hr 35min

Despite all the evidence, millions around the world continue to blame the Jews for 9/11. This belief is a modern-day incarnation of the infamous "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion," the century-old forgery that some peo...  more »

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Movie Details

Actors: Marc Levin, Al Levin, Alan Levin
Director: Marc Levin
Creators: Marc Levin, Mark Benjamin, Ken Eluto, Daniel Praid, Danielle Schleif, Daphne Pinkerson, Jeff Herr, Jennifer Tuft, Michael Skolnik, Nancy Abraham, Sheila Nevins, Steve Kalafer
Genres: Documentary, Military & War
Sub-Genres: Documentary, Military & War
Studio: Velocity / Thinkfilm
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Closed-captioned
DVD Release Date: 07/11/2006
Original Release Date: 01/01/2004
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2004
Release Year: 2006
Run Time: 1hr 35min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 2
Members Wishing: 0
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

A chilling look at anti-Semitism in the wake of September 11
Lawrance M. Bernabo | The Zenith City, Duluth, Minnesota | 07/11/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)

"In the wake of September 11th, documentarian Mark Levin ("Gladiator Days: Anatomy of a Prison Murder," "Soldiers in the Army of God"), was stunned to hear people on the streets of New York City claiming that no Jews were killed when the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center fell. He was also told that the attack was not made by Islamic terrorists but was instead part of a Zionist plot that had been set down over a century early in a book called "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion." According to some this is a record of a secret meeting in which Jewish leaders set down their plan for world domination. For others it is a hoax, consisting of material plagiarized from earlier sources, perpetrated by the Tsarist police to attack the Bolsheviks. If you fall into the first camp then all you need to know about this 2005 documentary is that Mark Levin is Jewish. He does not belong to a synagogue, but his grandfather is honored in one, and since the director is Jewish this film would have to be seen as an attack on those who dare to debunk the "Protocols." If you are in the second camp then what you will find here is a look at the power and pervasiveness of hate.

I belong to the second camp, which means I think it would be interesting to see somebody from the first camp telling Osama bin-Laden that it was the Jews who brought down the WTC and not Al Qaeda's suicide hijackers. On the topic of the world Jewish conspiracy, my opinion is that it is not going too well. There is a scene where Levin is in West Palm Beach, wanting somebody to explain the Butterfly-ballot fiasco in light of the Jewish plan to take over the world. Of course he fails to look at it from the perspective of the rabid conspiracy theorists, who would still see this as evidence that the "Protocols" are true because having Bush and Cheney in office who be more beneficial than having Gore and Joe Lieberman. The Democrats would not have invented Iraq, whereas the Republicans were looking for an excuse. And so it goes.

The "Protocols" are the starting point for Levin taking his camera and having interesting discussions with Arab Americans, white nationalists, black nationalists, Christian evangelicals, Kabbalist rabbis, Holocaust survivors, and who ever else he can find. The "Protocols" keep popping up, but Levin is looking at anti-Semitism in the wake of 9/11. This includes not only a white supremacy that cannot keep copies of the "Protocols" on their shelf in West Virginia, but also the opening of Mel Gibson's film "The Passion." For the most part Levin lets people say what they want to say, but he often tries to challenge some of the statement. The best indication of how this usually goes is when he is told that New York City is controlled by Jews in the person of Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Levin counters by pointing on that on 9/11 the major was Rudy Giuliani only to be told that "Jew-liani" proves the argument as well. And so it goes.

British journalist and diplomatic Lucien Wolf was the first to document that the protocols were fabricated from two obscure 19th-century sources, Maurice Joly's "Dialogue in Hell Between Machiavelli and Montesquieu" (1864) and Herman Goedsche's "Biarritz" (1868). This comes out more in the bonus interview with Will Eisner, who's graphic novel "The Plot" tells the history of "The Protocols of Zion," than it does in Levin's documentary, which is more interested than taking the premise and looking at those who believe the hoax to be true. There is also more of the interview with James Carroll on the Passion story, the "Protocols of Zion" trailer, and a timeline, as well as a discussion with Marc Levin at the Boston Jewish Film Festival, November 6, 2005, where he freely admits he has no solution to the problem of combating such hatred. However, he does argue that this is the question on the table for the current generation.

Beyond the notion that anti-Semiticism is making a comeback in the 21st century, Levin covers the entire range of such beliefs, from those who brandish weapons while promising death to the Jews to small children who have been taught to hate. But beyond the power and the prevalence of such hate there is also a chilling element of politeness. I would have thought that people discussing such things in calm voices would have been a good thing, but it does not turn out to be that way. In the end, "Protocols of Zion" leaves viewers as bewildered as it does the filmmaker as to where do we go from here. You hate to get to the end of such a documentary and feel such a sense of despair, but hope is hardly a rational belief in light of what we see on the nightly news (regardless of who is really behind it)."
Nearly Unwatchable
Historylover | Laurel, MD USA | 01/30/2007
(1 out of 5 stars)

"Ever Again was not a particularly well done documentary, but it's a work of genius compared to this drivel. It seems most of the other reviewers have been soft on this film because it is against the evil of Antisemitism. This film fails to make a coherent argument. The director jumps from scene to scene with no flow or direction. There are numerous tangents that go nowhere. The director likes to hear himself talk and ends up in verbal fights with idiots while he spouts stupid platitudes. Worst of all, the director seems to believe in a great all encompassing corporate conspiracy not much different than that expoused by The Protocols."
Hard view
Philip B. Yochim | Louisville, KY | 11/02/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)

""Protocols of Zion" takes a somewhat convulted view on modern, post-9/11 anti-Semitism in the world, using the nefarious fabrication of the "Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion" as a template.

Much of the film doesn't reflect much on the actual screed itself, but rather the modern world's Jew hatred. The new anti-Jewish myth is no Jews died at 9/11.

Get ready for some intense dialogue. Ironically, some of the most hateful remarks in the film come from participants in a peace rally. An older man states he'd rather go to hell than be in heaven with "f----" Bush and Cheney. This is opposed to the spokesman from the Natonal Alliance in his tacky red tie speaking plainly about their beliefs and operations. Actually, some of the best, most honest and rational sounding people in the whole film are convicts at a maximum security prison.

One of several scens that bothered me was the interview with young Palestinian-Americans. They were born Americans, but still so wrapped up in the affairs of the "old country." I had to wonder why this was, especially in the wake of so many others, like the Irish, the Poles, the Italians, the Chinese, etc. who worked to become Americans and never looked back. And then hearing these guys start talking like gangstas didn't make the situation any better.

The worst moment was definitely the interview on the Passion with James Carroll. Aside from that, it was worth the look."
Compelling Topic, Mediocre Execution
M. JEFFREY MCMAHON | Torrance, CA USA | 09/30/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)

"I give this DVD four stars, not three, because the topic, the universal irrational antisemitism championed by a bogus conspiracy called the "Protocols of Zion," is a compelling topic, especially in a post 9/11 world where people actually embrace the crackpot belief that the Israelis, the Jews, "did 9/11," and that no Jews were killed in the World Trade Center. Sadly, the filmmaker spends too much time interviewing marginal people who are obviously loons. More chilling is when he focuses on people with credibility who embrace the same deranged beliefs."