Ushpizin

[Amazon Link] [4.0
stars] [IMDb Link]

This is a nice little movie based in the culture of ultra-Orthodox Jews in Jerusalem. The hero is Moshe, who's down on his financial luck, dodging the landlord. Worse, the Succoth holiday is coming up and there's no money to build the traditional succah, a temporary dwelling, in the courtyard outside. Let alone buy the four customary "species": branches of myrtle, willow, and palm, and (most important) a nice citron.

But then everything changes: Moshe and his wife get a windfall of cash; a succah becomes available. Also, unexpected visitors arrive from Moshe's less-virtuous past: two convicts who decide not to return to prison after their furlough expires. Moshe interprets these as the ushpizin, honored guests that appear during Succoth. To put it mildly, they behave in ways that test his faith.

The movie's in Hebrew with English subtitles. It's a fun and interesting look at a different culture, so if you're in the mood for a break from more slick commercial fare, it's worth checking out.

I suspect that I may be the only person on the planet who watched Resident Evil: Extinction and Ushpizin as a double feature.


Last Modified 2012-10-14 10:12 AM EST