There have already been a couple of reams written about this film, particularly in the USA. The main reason for the fuss seems to be it’s portrayal of Palestinian Arabs as human beings rather than saliva-flecked anti-Semitic animals. Goodness me, whatever next?!?
Anyway, here’s what little I can add:
1) When he’s on form, Spielberg is a very good director indeed. There was a ton to enjoy in Munich, from the editing and action, to the lighting and unobtrusive period feel (it’s set mainly in Western Europe in the early 1970s).
2) Some of the best aspects of the script may owe a lot to Quentin Tarantino, who once explained that he made gangster films, but the trick was that the gangsters weren’t speaking about gangster type stuff... It’s the same in Munich – none of the Palestinian terrorists is seen doing anything remotely illegal. Many of them have partners and friends and careers and children. By contrast it's the Israeli vengence team that are abhorrent and criminal.
3) There was a really excellent scene or two in a French Chateau owned by a creepy yet charming “patron” who runs a private intelligence shop.
4) Judging by the T.V. documentary I saw last week, many of the killings in the film were fairly accurate in terms of method and means. This was surprise.
5) The most upsetting and horrible assassination didn’t happen in real life. I dunno what this tells us about truth and fiction and the way fiction sometimes tells the truth better than fact blah de blah de blah…. Whatever, it's a brilliant piece of cinema.
6) Black September’s cruel and foolish acts of terrorism were gift-wrapped propaganda presents. Israel used these gifts wisely and perhaps extended Western liberal support for the colony by as much as an extra decade. In fact it wasn't until General Ariel Sharon’s criminal invasion of the Lebanon in 1982 that Israel began to lose the widespread support it had enjoyed in the West since it’s foundation in 1948.
So... where does all this leave Munich? Well, despite it's faults and liberties with the truth it's a joy to see a good film that poses serious questions about the morality and effectiveness of our Forever War (a.k.a the war on terror).