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Helen Mirren gives an outstanding performance as Golda Meir, the Israeli Prime Minister, in a tense version of 1973’s Yom Kippur War when Egypt and Syria launched a massive surprise attack on the holiest day of Judaism. It follows the indomitable but aged and sick leader through a perilous battle for the survival of her country. She faced enemies at the gates with an iron will, fierce determination, and a towering presence that commanded authority. The film contrasts her suffering from cancer with having enough courage to make life-threatening decisions under extraordinary circumstances.

Golda (Mirren) has large swollen feet as she walks gingerly before sitting down at a table next to an ashtray. She smokes cigarette after cigarette while members of the 1974 Agranat Commission prepare anxiously to ask her questions about her government’s failures during the Yom Kippur War. Israel suffered heavily but also took revenge on their Arab neighbors; thus it was not caught off guard. That came at great cost. There are many things which must be explained.

The film then moves back to October 3, 1973. Her closest advisers give Golda startling intelligence information about military matters when she is told by them that: Zvi Zamir (Rotem Keinan), head of Mossad, has an urgent message from one of his spies in Cairo; Egyptians will invade any time soon; Moshe Dayan (Rami Heuberger), Israel’s Defense Minister confirms that Syrian fighter jets and tanks have also been concentrated there.

The commanders think this might be a false alarm- Zvi’s agent had previously warned months ago but was wrong about a pending Arab attack. Golda realizes that all over Israel people are preparing for Yom Kippur? Just what they would want before attacking! But shooting first is forbidden by Israeli law so instead she orders some troops raised for reasons just in case.

The larger armored forces of Egypt and Syria are released. Once again there was an Arab-Israeli war. However, this was not going to be a simple Israeli triumph like the Six Day War of 1967. Zvi’s appraisal of Arab strategy had been right. Golda actively listens as her generals explain their counterattack and defense positions she has ordered. Maps are unfurled as a critical response is needed. Being able to tell what is actually happening on the ground accurately, Golda sends Moshe to the front line where he is supposed to go for that purpose. He goes away but she also has something else that must be done urgently.

Golda walks through a morgue of a Tel Aviv hospital smoking cigarette after cigarette while Lou Kaddar (Camille Cottin), her trusted aide, helps her onto a gurney for radiation treatment; doctors warn her about bad habits such as excessive smoking and drinking black coffee; yet she will still light up another cigarette or sip another cup of boiling water; then they return back to command center moments later opening hours have revealed disastrous planning; his nerves are obvious; when addressing press correspondents and journalists, Moshe shows them all that he is made of even though they know that he fears for his life more than anything else. Golda knows her people are frightened. Two demands were satisfied before Golda addressed Israel immediately and then spoke with US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger (Liev Schreiber).

Golda Meir (Helen Mirren) seems to be at the eye of storms in Israeli director Guy Nattiv’s new film but still keeps focus on personal issues and how one can rise above them all put together.The entire movie finds Golda sitting on rooftops smoking in worried contemplation, conducting the battle plans, and suffering from lymphoma.She continually updates her notebook with latest number dead or wounded in action.”

Golda puts on a brave face for everyone except Lou; he is the only person who sees her in that condition. Brutishness of sickness is reflected in scenes of her spitting blood and losing clumps of hair. To Golda’s spirit, trust was more important than any other thing this friend meant to her: a surrogate daughter, dear friend and an invaluable aide.

Golda knew well about all worst outcomes possible hence she swore never to be taken alive.

Nattiv writes about war from a wide angle eye as claimed by the helicopter view but not through Golda’s eyes alone. Moreover, there are intercuttings with archival footage, news reports and battlefield audio within bunker events. As generals argue among themselves about the best way forward for their armies, we see Golda trying to make out something out of the fog of war.

Similarly, the larger geopolitical stakes between the US and Soviet Union were also considerations here. Kissinger didn’t want the Cold War blowing up. Israel was under threat but Golda paid little attention to those pulling strings behind the scenes. However she realized that repelling once again those who invaded or attempted to do so would depend on whether they could get American armaments and equipment or not.

Mirren depicts Golda as resolute, steady however cold-blooded when required. She demanded it from everybody and took it for granted. Her cabinet remained standing till she sat down. Kissinger strongly respected her opinion. On a global stage controlled by men yet she was just another woman doing what needed to be done; someone whose ability no one doubted while making difficult decisions especially at such moments as these ones which were truly hers alone; she commanded that kind of unwavering loyalty without ever actually doing anything or saying much at all really; some film clips have shown just how tough things were during time when soldiers where encouraged by such speeches made

Morale boosters include footage of Golda at the front, cheering soldiers. Not visible to them was how she struggled just to get on that plane.

Golda is competently directed, thoughtfully approached and moves quickly. It is an individual story taking place within a momentous setting that will have historical consequences. The Arab-Israeli conflict might affect your view of this film. Therefore watch dispassionately and understand that it has its own narrow focus. Nattiv lauds Golda as a hero who could defend her country effectively. Mirren is typically splendid in her role, providing the character with depth, courage, and complexity throughout the movie.

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