Film Club: ‘Pick a Side. Pick a Side. Pick a Side. Now.’

Film Club: ‘Pick a Side. Pick a Side. Pick a Side. Now.’

Pick a Side. Pick a Side. Pick a Side. Now.” is a four-minute Opinion video that explores the role of social media in the current Israel-Hamas war, and whether it allows any space for nuance or neutrality. “The insistence on picking a side,” the Times filmmakers argue, “threatens the public’s ability to take a holistic view of what is happening, to recognize and acknowledge atrocities irrespective of their perpetrators and to honor and mourn those who lost their lives.”

How persuasive is the film? Do you agree that social media is only making the current crisis worse? Have you felt pressured to post your reaction to the Israel-Hamas war online — and to pick a side?


1. Watch the short film above. While you watch, you might take notes using our Film Club Double-Entry Journal (PDF) to help you remember specific moments.

2. After watching, think about these questions:

  • What questions do you still have?

  • What connections can you make between this film and your own life or experience? Why? Does this film remind you of anything else you’ve read or seen? If so, how and why?

3. An additional challenge | Respond to the essential question at the top of this post: In the Israel-Hamas war, social media demands that we have to choose a side. Is that helping, or only making things worse?

4. Next, join the conversation by clicking on the comment button and posting in the box that opens on the right. (Students 13 and older are invited to comment, although teachers of younger students are welcome to post what their students have to say.)

5. After you have posted, try reading back to see what others have said, then respond to someone else by posting another comment. Use the “Reply” button or the @ symbol to address that student directly.

Want more student-friendly videos? Visit our Film Club column.

Students 13 and older in the United States and Britain, and 16 and older elsewhere, are invited to comment. All comments are moderated by the Learning Network staff, but please keep in mind that once your comment is accepted, it will be made public.