My Father My Lord
From the opening frame of an Orthodox Haredic Rabbi in torment about some as yet unknown personal and spiritual agony, you know you’re in for a tough ride. The painful finale questions everything that this tunnel-visioned individual has held dear questioned without pity. Living a life driven solely by obsessive study of the Torah, Abraham (Assi Dayan) gives little regard for the feelings of his browbeaten wife Esther and playful young son Menahem. When a visit is made to the Dead Sea, a tragedy ensues which tests everyone’s fibre.
This sombre debut feature (whose DVD extras are limited to a suitably subtle trailer) from writer and director David Volach is a harsh yet beautiful chamber piece about a dark struggle between faith and family and how matters close to the heart will eventually rip the blinkers away from dogmatic belief.