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Three elderly men and grandson Yonatan find themselves stuck together in a Jerusalem nursing home. The kid is a genius, but stammers and is bullied at school. Yonatan's grandfather, Eliahu, whom he had never met, is a former member of the Lehi (pre-State Jewish underground), and a cold person. Eliahu's best friend from Lehi, Nick, is full of ambition and passion that will never materialize; and Eliahu's English brother-in-law, a has-been, third-rate actor in debt for 232,000 euros. There's one thing keeping them together - they all want to rob the bank that employed Yonatan's deceased father to avenge it for not paying the Yonatan's mother compensation for his dad's death, due to the "small print" in his employment contract. And they want the money to make their last wish come true. Written by
Fun, well performed, a little ragged around the edges
This isn't the first movie about old men who rob a bank, nor the second. But Reshef Levi comes by the theme honestly; his own father was a bank robber for the Jewish underground before Israel regained its independence in 1948. Like his previous movie Lost Islands, which was a great success, this one involves a largish web of characters and relationships, all interesting. The problem with Hunting Elephants is that in order to put the puzzle together, it has to rely too much on verbal explanations of past events. Sometimes it even jumps into the future to show people talking in retrospect about what happens in the main plot. There is also something of a credibility problem with the way the brains of the elderly characters are sharp or muddled depending on what suits the moment. But the performances are good-- it's rather an all-star cast, including many of the bit players-- and there were many lines that had the audience laughing appreciatively. I'm not sure anyone mentions it, but the film takes place in Jerusalem.
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