20 October 2011 | Nozz
Retreating from nowhere interesting to nowhere interesting
A traumatized young man retreats into himself, he is induced briefly to reestablish contact with the world, but he wonders whether he wasn't better off by himself after all. The premise isn't a bad one; it worked for The Who's TOMMY, for Dan Wollman's HA-TIMHONI, and for Neil Diamond's SHILOH. Here, unfortunately, not so much-- maybe primarily because we don't get a strong enough sense that the world the protagonist retreated from is so bad, nor that the world he retreats into has much allure, nor that he has any personal merits or promise; he's merely a disturbed fellow with whom we can't identify, and we can't identify with any other major character here either. A girl comes knocking on the door (literally) and is supposed to be the protagonist's hold on reality, but her own behavior is unrealistic even by filmscript standards. Also, there is a syndrome that better Israeli movie makers long ago cured themselves of-- the attempt not to be identifiably Israeli. Pathetically, the movie even includes a grandfatherly character called "Grumps"-- evidently because nobody with an ear for English was around to correct it to "Gramps." On the plus side... the soundtrack is quite good.