Raging Dove: A Documentary Film

Raging Dove: A Documentary Film
Thursday, April 10, 2014
6:30 PM - 8:00 PM
Haines Hall, Room 220
UCLA Campus
Los Angeles, CA 90095
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An award winning documentary by flmmaker Duki Dror, Raging Dove tells the story of world-champion boxer, Johar Abu Lashin. Palestinian by birth, Israeli by circumstance and American by choice, his warring identities threaten to to pull him apart.  The only place where he truly feels whole is in the boxing ring.

The reigning world welter-weight champion, Abu Lashin decides to defend his title first in his hometown of Nazareth, and then in Gaza, Palestine.  But he unwittingly orchestrates his own downfall, as he is trapped in the quagmire of Middle East politics.  

Israel, 2002.  Running time: 54 Minutes.  In English and Hebrew, with English subtitles.



From Reviews of Raging Dove


"This bruising but illuminating documentary considers how nationalism flattened one young, sure-footed boxer....
Mr. Dror`s intimate, dedicated camerawork captures the boxer`s wrath and dejection, plus some maniacal, sweaty glimpses of a sport that is too often depicted as a ballet with blood. "Sometimes I feel, I`m ashamed to say, a hero without a home," the prizefighter says, with uncharacteristic self-pity. His failures strangely ennoble him, making him stronger without the rah-rahs of a fickle fan base.


“Could an athlete want something more than to be world champion in his field? It seems unlikely. But fact is, that`s what happened to Johar Abu Lashin who was the world welter-weight champion, and gave up his title—actually gave up all he had accomplished in his lifetime—in his search for that something else. When he was young, [Abu Lashin] went to the United States, where he was considered the next great hope and billed the "Israeli boy." The first time he won the title he stood in the ring waving an Israeli flag to the sound of Hatikva [the Israeli national anthem]. His relatives in Nazareth and Arabs worldwide criticized him for it. Thus, the second time he won the title he posed for photographers wrapped in a Palestinian flag. Since then, his life has become unbearable as he stumbles through a maze of identities: Palestinian, Israeli and American. His identity is more important than his title. It`s a great story. Director Duki Dror, managed to distill it, film its finer dramatic moments, sharpen its climaxes, and capture the tragedy embodied in it—a microcosm of the tragedy in which all the region`s residents find themselves.”

Sponsor(s): Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for Israel Studies