Friday, March 07, 2008

Kadosh (Sacred)

This 1999 final work in a trilogy by director Amos Gitaï is really interesting for the story it tells but more for the austere, methodical, poetic and somber way Gitaï’s conceived to tell this story which makes this film quite devastating but very good representative of Gitaï’s incursions into art cinema.

Tells about two sisters for whom the inflexible tenets of ultra-Orthodox Judaism leave no life options and are forced to do things that they do not want to do. While giving a glimpse into that little documented foreign lifestyle it also gives an angry and sad portrait of what women have to endure thanks to strict religions that consider women a lot less than men.

The film opens with the husband of one of the sisters, Rivka, dressing and saying his morning prayers and one prayer verse not only caught my attention but I believe sets the mood of the film, it says something like this: Blessed mighty God that had not create me a woman. Wow! After hearing this verse it is easy to imagine what this drama brings as a story.

The performances are extraordinary with Yaël Abecassis playing Rivka and Meital Barda playing her younger sister Malka; the supporting roles performances are also very good in a movie that moves slowly, very slowly with just the necessary words and darker-somber images of an obscure life that many live still today.

Not an easy movie to see but this in competition for the Golden Palm movie at 1999 Cannes and winner of the Best Foreign Film at the 2000 BIFA Awards is one that I suggest women allover the world to do not miss as it is like one critic said: “a film that is as beautiful as it is all but unbearable to watch”.

Absolutely not for all audiences, but as I already suggested this is a must be seen for women and perhaps those men that can deal with devastating women stories like the one told in my favorite Romanian movie.


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