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Biographical drama ”Golda” will open the 40th Jerusalem Film Festival

Golda Meir ranks as one of the modern Jewish state’s leading founding pioneers

Helen Mirren starring in 'Golda' (Photo courtesy United King Films)

The biographical film “Golda” starring Oscar-winning actress Helen Mirren as Israel’s iconic Prime Minister Golda Meir, will kickstart the 40th Jerusalem Film Festival on July 13.

Israeli filmmaker Guy Nativ directed the American-British drama, which zooms in on Golda Meir’s life during the turbulent period of the Yom Kippur War in 1973. Aside from Mirren, the stellar cast includes Liev Schreiber as the U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger.

While Golda Meir ranks as one of the modern Jewish state’s leading founding pioneers, she was criticized for reacting slowly to reports from Israeli military intelligence that the Egyptians and the Syrians were preparing a surprise attack against the Jewish state on Yom Kippur, the holiest day in the Jewish calendar.

Mirren, who won an Oscar in 2007 for her performance as the English Queen Elizabeth I in the film, “The Queen,” articulated admiration for Israel’s as-of-yet only female prime minister.

“[Golda] was extraordinarily brave and her commitment to Israel was total,” Mirren told The Hollywood Reporter in February.

Mirren described Golda Meir as a maternal leader who put national interests above personal power aspirations.

“It was a bit like playing Elizabeth the First of England, in the sense [of] her commitment to her country and to her nation. She achieved it without being the sort of power-mad sort of dictator character. She was very maternal. She had that wonderful domestic side to her. She was happiest when she was on the kibbutz looking after the chickens, but life took her on a different path,” Mirren said.

Ukrainian-born Golda Meir, whose family fled to the United States due to anti-Semitic violence, recently inspired some Ukrainians to join the fight against the current Russian army invasion.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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