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A devout 18-year-old Israeli is pressured to marry the husband of her late sister. Declaring her independence is not an option in Tel Aviv's ultra-Orthodox Hasidic community, where religious law, tradition and the rabbi's word are absolute.
NY PostFull Review Average Trouble is, while the social milieu is nicely realized, other parts of the drama are not. Too often Burshtein cuts off a scene prematurely, darting away just as the crucial moment of emotion or confrontation appears.
It's obviously not a subculture in which people have wide-ranging heart-to-heart talks, but there is little in the way of action to compensate. Poignant close-ups are no substitute for character development.
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Eighteen-year-old Shira is the youngest daughter of an Orthodox Hasidic family from Tel Aviv. She is about to be married off to a
promising young man of the same age and background. It is a dream-come-true, and Shira feels
prepared and excited.
On Purim, her twenty-eight-year-old sister, Esther, dies while giving birth to her first child. The pain
and grief that overwhelm the family postpone Shira's promised match.
Everything changes when an offer is proposed to match Yochay -- the late Esther's husband -- to a
widow from Belgium. Yochay feels it's too early, although he realizes that sooner or later he must
seriously consider getting married again.
When the girls' mother finds out that Yochay may leave the country with her only grandchild, she
proposes a match between Shira and the widower. Shira will have to choose between her heart's wish
and her family duty.