Words Wal Reid
With the #MeToo movement spurred by Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein’s alleged sexual harassment scandals, long time feminist filmmaker Michal Aviad’s gritty drama about a young Israeli mother returning to the work force and putting up with her boss’s sexual advances, is as topical as it is provocative – Does any of this smack of familiarity?
“It’s a polarising subject that is overly reported time after time in the news. The sexualisation of women in the work force”
It’s a polarising subject that is overly reported time after time in the news. The sexualisation of women in the work force. The premise revolves around young Mum Orna, (played by the brilliant Liron Ben Shlush) the mother of three lives a frugal existence while her husband struggles to start his own restaurant. Her fragmented narrative matches the movie’s pace and the mood of the picture, unfurling its lucid storyline.
To help fund her family, Orna returns to the workplace landing a job with Benny, expertly played by Menashe Noy who is a successful real estate developer. His character epitomises the macho Svengali-like predatory boss, who under the guise of an ‘helping angel’ is nothing further from the truth. To be honest, I just wanted to throttle the guy.
While she embraces her new job and tries to balance its demands with her home life, she begins to experience escalating sexual harassment from Benny which compromises her belief system and relationship with her husband Ofer (McMafia’s Oshri Cohen). Under the strain of the tense work place situation, Shlush delivers her performance with gusto while duping the audience into believing her character, this respite in the film helps her gather some much needed self-confidence.
I thought her performance was well handled and she has a pensive dead-pan expression that would leave Garbo for dead (if she was still alive) Now and then I found the film meandering but not to the point of finding myself switching off. I mean it was an easy watch so that’s a big thumbs up (short attention span here) that coupled with its surprisingly redemptive outlook was another reason to like this.
The film delivers. It’s job exposing the underbelly of a sexist society while tapping into the sentiment of the viewer. This simple truth resonated with myself even though it was subtitled, it’s message engaging. It is a powerful reminder that not all is well with the world, however, the film’s sanguine ending should serve as a timely reminder that now and then, we can restore our faith in humanity.