17th Annual Jewish Film Festival
Director: Dan Shadur
Israel, 2018 • Documentary • Hebrew with English subtitles • 87 minutes
Brilliantly assembled entirely of footage from countless TV appearances, King Bibi: The Life and Performances of Benjamin Netanyahu charts the ascent of Israel’s media-savvy prime minster. As his political fortunes rose, Netanyahu quickly perfected his skills as a master of public speaking and media manipulation. Through four decades of news conferences, interviews, and speeches, Israel’s second longest-serving prime minster exhibits an obsessive, near-faultless execution of his public image. Twenty years before the spectacle of Donald Trump, Netanyahu already understood the political benefits of a toxic relationship with the media and direct communication with the public. Deconstructing the man who ushered Israeli politics into the 21st century with an American style of politicking, this potent portrayal reveals a controversial politician’s instinct for seizing power through the art of communication.