Aliyah Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 7 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: Alex, 27, lives in a working-class Paris neighborhood and sells drugs for a living, continuously paying off the debts of his brother Isaac (played by French auteur Cedric Kahn), who's becoming a real burden. When his cousin, who has just returned from completing his military service in Israel, tells him he's opening a restaurant in Tel Aviv, Alex thinks that joining him might be the life-changing opportunity he was waiting for. But in order to leave, Alex must quickly find enough money and accomplish his "aliyah" (the term for Jews emigrating to Israel) which involves, among other things, Hebrew lessons and connecting with his Jewish roots. He also has to leave behind his beloved city of Paris, his former lover Esther, his lifelong friend Mathias, and Jeanne, a woman whom he's just met but has the potential of becoming someone important in his life. Torn between making his aliyah, his drug selling, his complicated love life and a destructive brother, Alex will have to find his own way and make a final decision. [Film Movement] Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 7
  2. Negative: 0 out of 7
  1. Reviewed by: Gary Goldstein
    Jun 19, 2013
    Tense, smartly crafted and highly resonant, Aliyah is one of the best films so far this year.
  2. Reviewed by: Alan Scherstuhl
    Jun 11, 2013
    A marvelous film, stripped of false urgency.
  3. Reviewed by: Stephen Holden
    Jun 13, 2013
    This smart, sober movie makes you feel the full weight of the challenges he faces.
  4. Reviewed by: Boyd van Hoeij
    Jun 10, 2013
    [An] intimate and dexterous debut feature.
  5. Reviewed by: Jordan Mintzer
    Jun 10, 2013
    Wajeman is particularly skillful at obscuring the lines between right and wrong, setting his story in a a dog-eat-dog world whose moral compass is slightly askew.
  6. Reviewed by: Elizabeth Weitzman
    Jun 14, 2013
    At first, Elie Wajeman’s moody French drama looks like so many other stories to come before it.
  7. Reviewed by: David Fear
    Jun 11, 2013
    There’s no sense of what Wajeman is after here. A character piece should have some sense of a character’s who, what and why, right?
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