Movies, books, and songs to capture the essence of Bangkok and get you in the mood for travel

Movies and TV Shows

Cast a Giant Shadow (1966)
Star-studded (John Wayne, Frank Sinatra, Senta Berger, Yul Brynner) real-life story of American Colonel Mickey Marcus who was killed trying to break through to the besieged city in 1948.

Every Time We Say Goodbye (1986)
A very young Tom Hanks as an injured American pilot, son of a Protestant minister, in love with a young Sephardic Jewish girl in World War II Jerusalem.

Kadosh (1999)
Two sisters’ restricted love lives in Jerusalem’s Orthodox Mea Shearim quarter. Hebrew with English subtitles.

Michael Sheli (My Michael) (1976)
A sensitive story of love and life in conservative Jerusalem, based on the novel by Amoz Oz. Hebrew with English subtitles.

Shalom Sesame, Jerusalem (1986)
The Muppets show violinist Itzhak Perlman and actress Bonnie Franklin around the city.

Mishehu Larutz Ito (Someone to Run With) (2006)
Two lonely teenagers in search of friendship and love in the streets of the city. Based on the novel by David Grossman.

Nasheem (Women) (1996)
A barren woman in the Sephardic community of 19th-century Jerusalem arranges a second wife for her rabbi husband. Hebrew with English subtitles.

Books

A Beggar in Jerusalem, by Elie Wiesel
Nobel Peace Prize-winning author describes the spiritual journey of a Holocaust survivor forced to confront the ghosts of his past in post-1967 Jerusalem.

Dying for Jerusalem: The Past, Present and Future of the Holiest City, by Walter Laquer (2006)
Renowned historian and journalist revisits the city he lived in half a century ago.

The Innocents Abroad, by Mark Twain (1869)
In his inimitable style, Twain recounts his journey to Europe and the Holy Land.

The Fight for Jerusalem: Radical Islam, the West, and the Future of the Holy City, by Dore Gold (2007)
Former Israeli ambassador to the UN provides historical background for his argument against fundamentalist Islam.

Murder in Jerusalem: A Michael Ohayon Mystery, by Batya Gur (2006)
The human complexities of the city and contemporary Israel through the eyes of Jerusalemite serial detective Michael Ohayon.

O Jerusalem, by Larry Collins and Dominique Lapierre (1988)
Slightly dated but riveting account of the events leading to the establishment of Israel and the division of Jerusalem in 1948.

Poems of Jerusalem and Love Poems, by Yehuda Amichai (1992)
“I remember that the city was divided/Not only between me and you/When we lived there together.” Translated work of one of Israel’s leading poets.

Shira, by Shmuel Yosef Agnon (1971)
Israeli Nobel prize laureate’s story of an adulterous relationship between an educated German immigrant and a Jerusalem-born nurse in 1930s Jerusalem.

A Woman in Jerusalem, by A. B. Yehoshua (2006)
A woman killed in a suicide bombing at a Jerusalem market raises questions of morality, personal identity, and nationality in a traumatized city.

Music

Compilations:

Jerusalem, Israeli Andalusian Orchestra
The Israeli Andalusian Orchestra plays Jewish liturgical music.

Lullabies From Jerusalem, Various Artists
Haunting sounds of the communities of Jerusalem past and present, from Yiddish to Ladino and Russian to Arabic.

The Most Beautiful Songs of Jerusalem, Various Artists
Performed by diverse performers including Shlomo Carlebach, the Zamir Chorale of Boston, and the Israel Pops Orchestra.

The Rough Guide to the Music Of Israel, Various Artists
Contemporary performers with an ethnic flavor, from late Yemenite diva Ofra Haza to the Idan Raichel Project’s Hebrew-Ethiopian pop.

To You Jerusalem, Yehoram Gaon
Golden-voiced Yehoram Gaon sings classics.

Classic Songs:

1. “Yerushalayim shel Zahav” (Jerusalem of Gold) by Naomi Shemer

2. “Me’al Pisgat Har Hatsofim” (Above the Peak of Mount Scopus) by Avigdor Hameiri

3. “Yerushalayim Sheli” (My Jerusalem) by Dan Almagor and Nurit Hirsch

4. “Sisu et Yerushalayim” (Rejoice in Jerusalem) by Akiva Nof

5. “Hakotel” (The Wall) by Yossi Gamzu and Dubi Zeltser

6. “Bab el Wad” (The Valley Gate) by Chayim Guri and Shmuel Fershko

7. “Tziyon Tamati” (Zion, My Innocent) by Menachem Mendel Dolitsky

8. “Bishe’araich Yerushalayim” (In Your Gates Jerusalem) by Yossi Gamzu and Yechezkel Braun

9. “Zot Yerushalayim” (This is Jerusalem) by Eitan Peretz, Nahum Heyman

10.“Le Yerushalayim Shemot Rabim” (Jerusalem has Many Names) by Dan Almagor and Nurit Hirsch

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