Thursday, June 27, 2013

Fill the Void: With What?

There is much to love in this Israeli film about an 18-year-old Hasidic woman on the verge of marriage.

 Most lovable of all is Shira (actress Hadas Yaron), who has captured the essence of being  young, confused and eager to please.

And yet, the Movie Slut didn't warm to this flick.

First of all, she wonders if the critics raving about it actually understood what they were watching. (Hey guys there are subtitles.)  They write that Shira must choose between two potential husbands. Not true. Bachelor number one drops out early on, leaving her for most of the film with possible husband number two, the widower of her beloved sister.

In case Shira decides to pass on this choice, which her mother desperately wants, she could end up like one of her older cousins—an unhappy spinster— pitied by all, who turned down a suiter because she didn't like him. Imagine! A woman with her own mind! Quelle Shonda!

Hasids, or ultra-religious Jews, follow the rituals of a sect that formed in Poland in the late 18th-century. In the movie warm family life is depicted. But notice the above photo. Shira is walking behind the man she may marry. All throughout the film there are examples of women taking a back seat. In several scenes the men sing joyously while the women sit passively. What's that about?

For much of this movie, the Movie Slut actually felt like she was watching FOX News. A whole lot of spinning was going on.

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