Soldier on the Roof

Netherlands 2012, 80 min, Hebrew and English, English subtitles

For three years Dutch-Israeli director Esther Hertog lived with the Jewish settlers of Hebron. She wanted to understand their motives for living there and learn about their lifestyle from the inside. Some 800 settlers live in Hebron, secured and separated from the city's 120,000 Palestinians by the IDF. Hertog interviews some of the local settlers, who are delighted to share their messianic plans for the place. She follows their children as they wander the streets and gets to know the soldiers stationed there. This patient observation of the Jewish life in Hebron and the day-to-day operations of the military regime that enable it, uncovers a surreal reality, and penetrates far deeper than the regular media representations of these settlers.

Soldier on the Roof website

Director, Script, Cinematography & Research: Esther Hertog
Production: Erica Reijmerink, Harry De Winter, Gijs Van De Westelaken
Production Company: Sarphati Media
Editing: Danniel Danniel
Print Source: Ruth Diskin Films (
  • Sun 5/5 21:15, Cinemateque 1with the filmmaker
  • Fri 10/5 12:15, Cinemateque 3with the filmmaker

Director CV

Born in Amsterdam, at the age of 12 Hertog immigrated with her family to Israel. A three and a half years effort, Soldier on the Roof, is Esther’s first major production. It was broadcasted on Dutch TV. The film was selected for IDFA film festival and awarded with two prizes.

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