Broken Wings

"Good"

Broken Wings Review


The winner of nine prizes at the Israeli Academy Awards and a hit in its home country, this is the story of a family that appears to define the term dysfunctional. A mother who is more than a little distracted strives hard to fulfill her parental duties, caring for four children who are a study in rebelliousness, escapism, and anger. Their torment and misery stretches patience to the point of annoyance until its source is finally revealed, at which point our sympathies are ignited.

Dafna (Orly Silbersatz Banai) can't quite catch up to her debts despite meeting all the demands of her job as a midwife in a local hospital, but she manages to provide the bare needs of her two boys and two girls. 17-year-old Maya (Maya Maron) is a singer-writer who might be on the cusp of discovery as a rock artist were it not for the demands of keeping the family together when Dafna isn't able to. The obligatory compromises lead to disaffection in the relationship and an unnatural sullenness.

Maya's troubled twin brother Yair (Nitai Gaviratz) is a study in denial as he insists that the people in his world are unreal, unimportant, or non existent. School and his scholastic promise are becoming more and more meaningless, along with a rejection of basketball, the sport in which he's been a rising star.

Rebellious misbehavior is most staggering when young Ido (Daniel Magon) gives physical expression to his desire to fly by jumping into an empty concrete pool and nearly breaking his neck. Perhaps a death wish? And finally, little Bahr (Eliana Magon, Daniel's real-life sister), is left on her own to wrestle with the burdens of adjusting to a world that's become difficult to comprehend.

The crosscurrent of problems afflicting the family and their efforts to cope tend to eventually break down some of the attitudinal isolation, occasionally introducing humor into the mix. Dafna sees something of a silver lining in a developing relationship with a doctor (Vladimir Friedman) while her courageous perseverance demands our respect and caring. Maya's confusion of emotions and aims take shape under the affection and loyalty she receives from friends and family. Yair's meet-up with an old girlfriend brings out the essential sweetness of his personality and develops some hope for self re-discovery.

The smoldering bomb in this movie goes off when we discover that this is a family stunned into extreme distress by the tragic death of a father nine months previously, jolting us with a new understanding. The character and value shifts, self doubts, defiance, personality disorders, and neuroses are symptoms of grief. The dynamics are suddenly explicable and moving, and they become a powerful statement about loss and the difficulty of adjusting to it.

Writer-director Nir Bergman's (Catching the Sky) emotional thickets are well-realized by a fine ensemble cast that takes its time to hook you into total concern. The central relationship between mother and daughter is finely tuned to reality and is a layered portrayal of interdependence and sacrifice even as the two are being most severely tested. These players are experienced in Israeli cinema and collectively demonstrate a warm, natural appeal.

It's almost surprising that a story from this embattled country can be made without a single reference to the politics and dangers that pervade Israeli life. But the strict avoidance of any reference to matters outside the family circle makes it a universal metaphor for all families traumatized by catastrophic loss, from natural causes or violent ones.

Aka Knafayim Shvurot .

I've got a bike, you can fly it if you like.



Broken Wings

Facts and Figures

Run time: 87 mins

In Theaters: Thursday 24th October 2002

Distributed by: Sony Pictures Classics

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 93%
Fresh: 62 Rotten: 5

IMDB: 7.6 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Murder on the Orient Express Movie Review

Murder on the Orient Express Movie Review

The latest adaptation of Agatha Christie's 83-year-old classic whodunit, this lavish, star-studded film is old-style...

Paddington 2 Movie Review

Paddington 2 Movie Review

The first Paddington movie in 2014 is already such a beloved classic that it's hard...

A Bad Moms Christmas Movie Review

A Bad Moms Christmas Movie Review

Everyone's back from last year's undemanding adult comedy, plus some starry new cast members, for...

Brawl in Cell Block 99 Movie Review

Brawl in Cell Block 99 Movie Review

Filmmaker S. Craig Zahler brought a blast of offbeat creativity to the Western genre two...

The Death of Stalin Movie Review

The Death of Stalin Movie Review

Fans of the film In the Loop and the TV series Veep will definitely not...

Call Me By Your Name Movie Review

Call Me By Your Name Movie Review

Set in northern Italy in the summer of 1983, this internationally flavoured drama is a...

Thor: Ragnarok Movie Review

Thor: Ragnarok Movie Review

The most riotously enjoyable Marvel movie yet, this action epic benefits hugely from the decision...

Advertisement
Breathe Movie Review

Breathe Movie Review

While this biopic has the standard sumptuous production values of a British period drama, it's...

The Snowman Movie Review

The Snowman Movie Review

With a cast and crew packed with A-list talent, this film seems like it should...

The Party Movie Review

The Party Movie Review

Comedies don't get much darker than this pitch-black British movie, written and directed by Sally...

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) Movie Review

The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) Movie Review

Noah Baumbach (Frances Ha) is on his way to becoming the new Woody Allen, which...

6 Below Movie Review

6 Below Movie Review

Based on an astonishing true survival story, this film is subtitled "Miracle on the Mountain",...

Mother Movie Review

Mother Movie Review

Darren Aronofsky doesn't make fluffy movies, and has only had one genuine misfire (2014's Noah)....

Blade Runner 2049 Movie Review

Blade Runner 2049 Movie Review

It's been 35 years since Ridley Scott's 1982 sci-fi classic, which was set in 2019....

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.