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The living and the dead meet through magical realism
You've got to love a movie where instead of mounting Charon's little ferryboat to the next world, the dead sit down on a plastic chair in the little trailer of Ben-Lulu's bicycle. MY LOVELY SISTER is a story about reconciliation between the dead and the living, between ethnic groups, and between the forces of emotional and sexual attraction. Being told by way of magical realism, it sits well in the milieu of Moroccan immigrants to Israel, some of whom have not quite given up their old- world belief in magic. One review claims that some of the characters are sketchy, and it's true. Evidently the script was cut a bit; Albert Iluz, a well-regarded character actor, is listed in the credits as "Rabbi Mevorakh" but he merely hangs around in a couple of crowd scenes, with no lines and without appearing to be rabbi anything. But even some parts of the script that we do see are a little undeveloped, like a drunken soliloquy by Moshe Ivgy in which he provides a bit of stilted exposition that, despite his talent, not even he can sound spontaneous with (as if the in-vino-veritas scene weren't an overfamiliar script device anyway). The female characters in the movie come off much better and the Ophir Awards (the Israeli Oscars) found both their Best Actress and their Best Supporting Actress in MY LOVELY SISTER.
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