The Dallas Movie Screening Group

This is the homepage of the Dallas Movie Screening Group. To join our mailing list you must sign up at our group page on Yahoo. You will then be connected to receive notices on how to find passes to the local screenings in the DFW area. It's up to you to pickup or sign up for passes. You can also barter, trade or just giveaway passes you don't want, need or share with other members of the group. Please read the instructions on the Yahoo page very carefully before posting. This group is closely moderated so that your mail box is not full of spam or other unnecessary mail. We appreciate everyone's consideration and cooperation.

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Website and Group Contact: dalscreenings@gmail.com

Friday, May 4, 2018

Disobedience





Director Sebastián Lelio's follow up of his Oscar winning A Fantastic Woman is his first English language film Disobedience. Written by Lelio and Rebecca Lenkiewicz it is based on the novel of the same name by Naomi Alderman. It is a curious melodrama about what it is to go back home to a restrictive religious community after being basically kicked out by one's own parent. There is something soothing and familiar to their close relationships in this Jewish Orthodox sect. Everyone knows each other, everyone knows what to expect within their norms. But you throw someone from the outside into the mix and suspicion and intolerance begin to fester behind their welcoming facade.

Ronit Krushka (Rachel Weisz) is a photographer in NYC, when she receives word that her father has died. The "Rez", an important figures London Orthodox Jewish community, dropped from heart attack while giving a sermon on a person's right to choose their life. Ronnie flies to London and expectantly shows up to the house of Rabbi Dovid Kuperman (Alessandro Nivola), an old childhood friend, and the protegee of the Rez who is expected to take his position. Everyone was not expecting her. In fact the local paper's obituary wrote that her father had no children. But what really riles Ronnie is the fact that Dovid was married to Esti (Rachel McAdams) with whom she shares a secret relationship. Dovid opens his home to Ronnie to stay for the services. And life becomes awkward.

Unless you have seen the trailer, one doesn't understand totally the confusion that Ronnie's appearance has on the tight knit religious group. You only know that Ronnie showing up, world wise and not wearing a wig as expected from Orthodox women makes everyone uncomfortable. Esti is a school teacher at an Orthodox school, Dovid is a teacher at the synagogue who is expected to follow in his mentor's place. Their routine at home is routine and expected from cooking, eating, and even sex. Ronnie throws a monkey wrench in the works. Dovid explains to the relatives that Ronnie is grieving when she become argumentative. She learns her father donated his house and all his belonging to the temple. Her aunt encourages her to go and retrieve anything she wants, like her mother's candlesticks so she can pass to her daughter's one day.

The reveal of Esti and Ronnie's affair during her school days was the reason for Ronnie to leave home an Ronnie to be estranged from her father. The boiling emotions from the women eventually is consummated causing a cascade of events in the last act. Life has basically stopped during their unresolved adolescent affair, with the stronger willed Ronnie leaving home, while the more dependent Esti gets married to kill her lesbian desires. Change is not easy for any of them including Dovid who also must understand his world being thrown in chaos. It's a movie that gets one involved with the character's individual turmoils without anyone being the bad guy. Very well performed, even the gratuitous sex scene was well done. In the end, it comes down to the father's last sermon, of people being able to make their own paths in life.
(Review by reesa)




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