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In Jerusalem, an Orthodox congregation is in a quandary following an incident that leaves their synagogue in great need of repair: as the elderly rabbi is showing gradual signs of mental decline, a younger rabbi (Aviv Alush) helps the congregation in the mean time but his ultra-orthodox fundamentalism rubs the congregants the wrong way - especially the women.
This film has a delightful gathering of characters who show their humanity and quirkiness simultaneously although this might have been enhanced with maybe a little over-the-top characterizations and situations now and then. Among the performers, Evelin Hagoel stands out as a woman who easily refutes the younger rabbi's forced changes on her community.
"The Women's Balcony" deals well with that age-old inner conflict among the religious - whatever the religion or denomination: the apparent sense of duty and obedience vs. what people know deep in their hearts to be true. This theme works well up to a point but the film is less effective due to the young rabbi's harsh, one-dimensional approach.
He easily comes off as a villain. If the film had given a glimpse as to what drives him, the audience could have been left with the inner-debate of whether to sympathize with him despite his odious actions. Despite the film's good points, this flaw reduces the film to a mixed result.
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