Menashe opens Friday, Sept. 15
The Women’s Balcony opens Friday, Sept. 22
Two films with Orthodox Jewish themes are planned to screen this month at the Naro Expanded Cinema in Norfolk.
The first, in Yiddish, Menashe, takes place in the heart of New York’s ultra-orthodox Hasidic Jewish community. Menashe—a kind, hapless grocery store clerk—struggles to make ends meet and responsibly parent his young son, Rieven, following his wife Leah’s death. Tradition prohibits Menashe from raising his son alone, so Rieven’s strict uncle adopts him, leaving Menashe heartbroken. Though Menashe seems to bungle every challenge in his path, his rabbi grants him one special week with Rieven before Leah’s memorial. It’s his chance to prove himself a suitable man of faith and fatherhood.
In Hebrew, The Women’s Balcony, is a rousing, good-hearted tale about women speaking truth to patriarchal power. An accident during a bar mitzvah celebration leads to a gender rift in a devout Orthodox community in Jerusalem when the synagogue’s women’s balcony collapses, leaving the rabbi’s wife in a coma and the rabbi in shock. Charismatic young Rabbi David appears to be a savior after the accident, but slowly starts pushing his fundamentalist ways and tries to take control. His patriarchal preaching test the women’s resolve and creates a dispute between the community’s men and women.
For more information, go to www.narocinema.com.