(1999)

Critic Reviews

70

Metascore

Based on 16 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
83
Seattle Post-Intelligencer
An alternately angry and sad portrait, passionate in its presentation and moving in its portrayal of individuals who sacrifice their love for the tenets of their religion.
78
Raises fascinating question within a compelling narrative framework, and is also intriguing for the glimpse it provides into the inner workings of Orthodox Judaism.
75
Slowly unfolding but liberating film, which is also a rare look inside a circumscribed community.
70
Gitai has created a film that is as beautiful as it is all but unbearable to watch.
70
It is unusually but effectively organized as an almost unbroken chain of intimacies between the small and large players in this story.
70
L.A. Weekly
This unusually classical story from experimental Israeli filmmaker Amos Gitai flows along, suffused in a quiet beauty flecked with sober foreboding.
67
Portland Oregonian
If it happens to lose you as you wander through this strange land, at least it does so to the accompaniment of captivating visuals and music.
63
Miami Herald
It moves slowly, but you suspect that is the way of life in Mea Shearim, the closed quarters of a group that triggered Gitai's respect and our curiosity.
60
Chicago Reader
It's hard to tell whether these characters are meant to seem as staunchly symbolic as they do when they deliver some of the back-story-heavy dialogue.
60
Gitai, a veteran documentary director, refuses to find an easy resolution to the story, and that will frustrate as many people as it pleases.

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