Earlier this week, the best comedy of the year played in cinemas for a one-night-only engagement. Missed it? Don’t worry: it’s gone straight to streaming on Mubi instead. Emma Seligman’s Shiva Baby is a blunt, salty-sharp blast of inspired farce, arriving in the UK on a tide of cultish enthusiasm from across the Atlantic. There, it’s been hailed as an immediate classic of Jewish cinema, a subgenre as rich and flavourful in its sensibility as Christian faith-based films are, well, not.
A shiva is a Jewish wake, and sure enough, Seligman’s film seeks out any number of inappropriate comic avenues to pursue at a single funereal gathering, over the course of just 77 wince-filled minutes. University student Danielle is the only