Disobedience (2017)

R   |    |  Drama, Romance

Disobedience (2017) Poster

A woman returns to her Orthodox Jewish community that shunned her for her attraction to a female childhood friend. Once back, their passions reignite as they explore the boundaries of faith and sexuality.

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  • Sebastián Lelio in Disobedience (2017)
  • Rachel Weisz and Rachel McAdams in Disobedience (2017)
  • Sebastián Lelio and Rachel McAdams in Disobedience (2017)
  • Rachel Weisz and Rachel McAdams in Disobedience (2017)
  • Ron Perlman at an event for Disobedience (2017)
  • Sebastián Lelio in Disobedience (2017)

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17 May 2018 | Jaffe
| Incredible and Authentic Depiction
Ronit (Rachel Weisz), a single middle-aged photographer, returns to England from New York following the death of her father, an esteemed ultra-Orthodox rabbi who had been the unparalleled Torah and spiritual leader of this non-Hasidic congregation and its institutions (despite, as can be derived from context, having begun his adult life as a Zionist-leaning scion). It immediately becomes evident that due to personal issues she had left the community at a very young age and never looked back. As the story develops, we learn that Esti (Rachel McAdams), now wife of Dovid Kuperman (the departed rabbi's chief disciple and heir apparent, played by Alessandro Nivola) had struggled with similar issues alongside Ronit in their youth but had chosen a drastically different method of coping.

With Ronit's return, old sentiments are dredged up in a manner that upends the lives of all three in a community that simply has not developed tools for dealing with the full spectrum of matters involving private life, nature and choice that have in recent years become so normalized that we hardly lend them so much weight.

As each of the three struggle to cope with their issues, it becomes clear that there is a void in place of a guide in the doctrine of the community and that there is no one right way to cope with outlying struggles.

The directing of the picture and the portrayal of the three main characters is stellar. Having come from this background, I can testify that aside from two seven-candle menorahs, this picture stands out as the most authentic portrayal of the ultra-Orthodox Jewish community in motion picture history.

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