From Nov ’06 Spotlight: Of the five films by Jewish filmmakers shown at this year’s Chicago International Film Festival, my personal favorite was Family Law, the third part of a trilogy by Argentinean director Daniel Burman. The first part, Waiting for the Messiah, is not available in the United States, but the second part, Lost Embrace, was shown in local theaters and is now available on DVD.
Burman is close in age and sensibility to Zach Braff and like Braff’s debut feature Garden State, Lost Embrace is a low-key charmer. Marketing mavens who compare Burman to Woody Allen are way off-base. Jewish family life is depicted in such affectionate and gently-humorous terms that the characters become Ashkenazi archetypes. Once Bubbi (marvelously played by Yiddish theater star Rosita Londner) begins to sing, we quickly forget that the characters are speaking Spanish. Clearly one of Sholem Aleichem’s literary great-grandsons now lives in Buenos Aires.
Family Law will open in theaters in December. To read my full-length review of Lost Embrace, visit: