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EICG Film Discussion: The Matchmaker (2010) (Virtual)

Thursday, January 7, 2021 23 Tevet 5781

7:00 PM - 9:30 PMVirtual

The focus of EtzIsraelConnectionsGroup (EICG) is to develop meaningful connections between the Etz Community and Israel by exploring the many voices and cultural elements of Israeli Society.

Fourth Film: Thursday, January 7th, 2021, 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

The Matchmaker (Once I Was) 2010

The beginning and end of this film, which take place in 2010, serve as bookends for the portrayal of Haifa in 1968. Director Avi Nesher captures this historical period in all of Haifa’s majesty while revealing its low-rent district underbelly. He tells the coming-of-age story of Arik, a 16 year old who meets Yankele Bride, a Shoah survivor and unconventional matchmaker. It turns out that Yankele and Arik’s father are long lost friends, having grown up together in Romania before the war. Yankele offers Arik a job as a detective (to check on the suitability of suitors) and introduces him to the seedy side of Haifa - populated by streetwalkers, black market businesses, and a theater owned by midgets who survived Doctor Mengele’s experiments. This film is moving and multilayered. It is a commentary on a nascent society populated by immigrants from all corners of the world, an indictment of the treatment of concentration camp survivors by native Israelis, and a symphony about love - from adolescent yearning, to unrequited desire, to eternal hope and longing. The acting is superb and the beauty and heterogeneity of Haifa is richly rendered. Caution: brief nudity


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Sat, January 16 2021 3 Shevat 5781