The Holy Land

Metascore
58

Mixed or average reviews - based on 21 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 21
  2. Negative: 2 out of 21

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Critic Reviews

  1. 60
    The film is really a timely critique of the ongoing insanity that has engulfed Israeli life.
  2. A barbed reflection on the great divide between secular and ultra-Orthodox Judaism in Israeli culture. But its digressive screenplay lacks focus and momentum and is too oblique to connect many of the dots between its characters and their behavior.
  3. Gorlin's fiction, based loosely on his own life, must be better than that of "Frontline." And it's not.
  4. It has the awkwardness that characterizes many first features and, as befits a culture that does not always prize refinement, some of its performances and situations are not as subtle as they should be.
  5. Serious and absurd (mostly, it's a drama) but never finds a good rhythm. The movie flounders in a way that calls too much attention to itself -- and is hurt by jarring and unbelievable plot twists.
  6. 50
    Fails to capture the anguish and struggles of an ultra-Orthodox Jew adapting to a more secular world as did Amos Gitai's Kadosh, a film this one sometimes brings to mind.
  7. 50
    This film might've worked better as a comedy.
  8. Although the narrative hiccups in The Holy Land can be chalked up to the mistakes of a beginning filmmaker, they are not disruptive enough to diminish the film’s realistic impact.

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