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It is party day at Marguerite Dumont's castle. She sings wholeheartedly, but terribly out of tune. Marguerite has been living her passion in her own bubble, and the hypocrite audience acts as if she was the diva she believes she is.
Terrific portrait of young women in transit between tradition and modernity
This Israeli production about Palestinian roommates in Tel Aviv presents a rich and moving array of the quandaries faced by young women on the uneven ground between traditional values and self-determination in a modern, urban landscape.
Leila, a young lawyer, and Salma, who begins the story as a sous chef and then takes a job as a bartender but also moonlights as a rave DJ, are modern young party girls who drink, smoke cigarettes, and do occasional pot and coke when their male friends are offering. Into their apartment moves Noor, an ostensibly traditional Muslim girl who never appears in public without a hijab, and is affianced to an activist who works in an NGO devoted to helping Muslims get by. He's not happy that she's studying computer science at university, and hopes she'll stay at home to raise their children eventually.
All three women collide with their culture's - and especially families' - traditional expectations. Salma's parents introduce her to various unappealing bachelors; Leila meets and dates a filmmaker who has studied and worked in New York but turns out to have some sticking points about her choices. Noor hits the hardest wall, but the way her initially unsympathetic roommates come together for her is beautiful and very satisfying.
Although this story centers on young women, and most of the men are forgettable at best or unpleasant (save for a queen-y gay friend of Leila's and, surprisingly, Noor's father, in a pivotal scene late in the movie), I wouldn't call it a "chick movie." It's well written and acted, and I found it not a great stretch to recognize that some men and families oppress young women in the U.S. in ways that are not so different, even today.
"In Between" is a lovely and solid piece of work.
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