Change Your Image
Upload An Image
Crop And Save
Aviva Ahuvati (2006)
Not another excellent Israeli family drama
Unfortunately, the movie disappointed me tremendously. Poor characterization (too many characters), a trite treatment of the themes that were raised, a lack of development and resolution in the plot and a lot of general sloppiness. I couldn't help but compare it to Broken Wings and Nina's Tragedies- and found it sorely lacking. It seemed- in general- to lack quality.
On the other hand, the audience around me seemed to like it. And it's been very well reviewed in Israel- receiving an average of 4 out of 5 stars, making it the 5th best reviewed movie in Israel at the moment.
My guess is that if you liked Sof Ha Olam Smola, you might like this, too, even if it's more pretentious and less fun.
The Syrian Bride (2004)
I'm a big fan of Israeli cinema, and I'm often proud of my country's efforts. But The Syrian Bride didn't work for me. I wanted to like it, but it was too predictable, too superficial, and by the end I was both bored and unmoved. Hiam Abbass is excellent, though.
I'd say the script was mediocre, but it could be that for an international audience the film will prove more appealing, since it does shed light in a clear and well-intentioned manner on the intricacies of the dilemmas of the Druze in the Golan Heights.
To give a frame of reference, I thought that both Year Zero and Paradise Now were far better movies than the Syrian Bride.
Embrassez qui vous voudrez (2002)
The French make mistakes
Those of us who like French cinema do so because, more often than not, the French display subtlety and skill in creating all sorts of different kinds of movies- light and heavy, political and whimsical. This is not one of them. In fact, other than the rampant, unapologetic sexuality, this could have been an American movie, and though I do like American movies, this is not meant as a complement. If you want a better French movie of this genre, try "The Taste of Others" or "Same Old Song"
Too violent and not very credible
The movie begins slowly. Then it becomes very violent. Then it ends. If Mechanizam had been made anywhere else, it's violence, dialogue and style would have been criticized and ridiculed. But coming from Serbia, with its tumultuous past years, the violence becomes "acceptable". So that I will not criticize what in my eyes, was tasteless and gratituous, but to others, may be a legitimate allegorical expression whose extremity was necessary to make a point. Style - well, I didn't like it. The camera pans sideways, strange sound effects are used, the violence is focused on over and over again. Up close and personal, as if viewing excessive movie gore will help the viewer to understand the atrocities of Yugoslavia. As for dialogue - it can be divided into two kinds. Some was intended to be funny and cynical, and sometimes, but not often, it was. Perhaps the subtitles were to blame. Some of it was clearly intended to be "meaningful" - especially the comments about the mechanism. I thought them very simple, and not entirely convincing. A counterexample - I don't think that the ideas in "Fight Club" were so terribly sophisticated, but the movie served to illustrate the ideas that were voiced. The ideas of "Mechanizam" are accompanied by a plot that sends the viewer straight to nihlism and apathy, not to mention disbelief. I hate to sound like I found the movie without redeeming qualities, but I find myself with little choice. I hope its director will seek other directions in his future projects.
The Comfort of Strangers (1990)
A Movie That Should Never Have Been Made
It's obvious that talent and effort went into the making of "The Comfort Of Strangers." It lovely photographing of Venice, the ominous atmosphere is well done, the acting is good, and it just seems so well, pretty. The million-dollar question is, why? Is it supposed to be entertainment? It doesn't feel that way. And a good thing, too, because despite the tension, despite the suspense the movie is too slow, too boring. I LIKE slow, psychological movies. But I couldn't help looking hopefully at my watch, over and over again. If you're after entertainment, watch something entertaining, watch something gratifying. No, `The Comfort of Strangers' feels like an art house movie. And despite my respect for artistic privilege, for self-expression why make this movie? I disagree with the other reviews this movie has nothing behind it, nothing. Is it aiming at realism? I hope not. Sure, much of the plot is conceivable. And a movie doesn't have to overtly portray its characters' motivations in order for the audience to believe that their behavior is legitimate but that believability is a must. Much of this movie just appears ridiculous and gratuitous. Unconvincing. Things happen just because. A mix of realism and absurdity, perhaps? Let's assume so. But to what ends, what is being expressed, why? A comment on the English perhaps, or on Italians? On men, maybe? On life? On love? Don't expect anything sophisticated. Someone described this movie as confusing. It only becomes confusing if you assume, a priori, that because so much effort was put into it, it DOES has some sort of meaning, and try to understand what it is. But all it is is a mish-mash of themes whose sum, regretfully, is infinitesimal. What this movie does do, and do well, is shock you. But in a bad way. You know something terrible is going to happen, but you don't expect it to be so ridiculously unwarrantable. You assume that it will add some sort of coherence, significance, something at all, to everything that has preceded it. But exactly the opposite happens. Credibility is destroyed, and to make things worse, the movie goes on, dragging itself on and on, as if a renewed declaration of its insensibility is going to make things better, make you accept it as some sort of whole. It doesn't. You don't need to hear the policeman ask why you are already asking a different question. Why has this movie been made?
César et Rosalie (1972)
Charmed despite high expectations
I saw "Cesar and Rosalie" at the Jerusalem Cinematheque. I had only seen Claude Sautet's later movies (which I loved), and was unsure what to expect. The cinema was packed full of people, and some of the older members of the audience were laughing out loud almost immediately at Yves Montand's antics. I was a bit more restrained. But it didn't take long for me to find myself laughing as well. And not only me; it seemed like everyone there was in good spirits, young and old alike. Yves Montand's acting was incredible, Romy Schneider is terribly desirable, and the film just floated along. Definitely worth seeing, both if you're a Claude Sautet fan or if you want a charming movie about the interesting relationship which develops between the movie's three protagonists.
Osher Lelo Gvul (1996)
Absurdist and interesting view of Israeli life
A good example of modern Israeli cinema, portraying urban life in Israel in an amusing way, as well as displaying one of the more interesting and odd characters of cinema in general- a singleminded descendant of Spinoza living, translating, and commenting on life today.
I hadn't seen many Israeli movies when I saw it, and was enormously pleased, although the second time was much less fascinating and a great deal more weird.
See it- it's definitely original.
A sweet movie about family
A very sweet movie about a family Passover dinner. It made me think of a Gabriel Garcia Marquez story for some reason. I remember the acting as excellent, and the relationships between the different characters as interesting- especially the tension caused by the co-appearance of both an ex-wife and the new girlfriend of one of the family members.