August 29, 2008

Redlands Cinema Classic Series Begins With ‘Jellyfish’

REDLANDS - The fall foreign film series of the Redlands Cinema Classic series, presented by the Margaret Clark Art Education Endowment Fund of the Redlands Art Association, begins with two screenings of "Jellyfish" ("Meduzot"), a film from Israel directed by Etgar Keret.

"Jellyfish" will be shown at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 30, and at 2:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 2. Both screenings are at the Krikorian Cinema 14 at 340 N. Eureka St., Redlands.

"Jellyfish" is a whimsical film that has garnered great reviews by some of the top movie critics in the business. It also won the Camera d'Or at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival and was a favorite on the film festival circuit.

Written by Shira Geffen, "Jellyfish" is set in Tel Aviv and centers on the lives of three women from different backgrounds, not known to each other. Their paths are subtly connected as their stories are intricately woven to illustrate how they deal with despair, frustration and hope in their everyday challenges.

The film does not focus on any war-related themes as is customary with films set in that region of the world.

One is not sure where this film is going as the lonely Batya (Sara Adler) gazes out to sea, morose after her breakup with her live-in boyfriend.

Suddenly, an enchanting little elfin girl (Nikol Leidman) emerges from the sea wearing only a plastic inner tube. How she got there, where her parents are and how she impacts Batya's life heighten the audience's curiousity.

Next the film focuses on Karen (Noa Knoller) at her wedding reception. She gets trapped in the bathroom and from then on her honeymoon is a series of incidents that one never expects to occur in this period that all newlyweds passionately await.

The third woman, Joy (Ma-nenita De Latorre), is from the Philippines and works as a caregiver to a woman who resents her daughter for hiring Joy and is angry that Joy does not speak Hebrew, but Joy is learning as fast as she can and cannot afford to lose her job.

In an interview on NPR, when asked by Robert Siegel why the title of the movie, director Etgar Keret replied, "Because I think that all the characters in it are a little bit like jellyfish in the sense that the current of life takes them to places that they don't really try to go to. They don't have much control over their lives."

Keret is a well-known Israeli writer and married to playwright Shira Geffen who is also well-known in Israel. This is their first film.

The fall film series will continue Oct. 14, 16, 28 and 30 and Nov. 11 and 13. Films will be announced later.

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