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neumu
Wednesday, November 26, 2014 
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Cinematronic by Michael Snyder
Film
cinematronic
  James' Journey to Jerusalem cinematronic
  director

Ra'anan Alexandrowicz

cast

Siyabonga Melongisi Shibe, Arieh Elias, Salim Daw, Sandra Schonwald, Hugh Masebenza, Florence Bloch, Ya'akov Ronen Morad

year

2003

rating rating cinematronic
  Here's something you don't see every day: a funny, socially insightful, poignant, original movie about a naïve, optimistic African preparing to be the Christian spiritual leader of his village by going on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. "James' Journey to Jerusalem" transforms the odyssey of its title character into a parable about the conflict between the sacred and the profane. James, played with warmth and vitality by Siyabonga Melongisi Shibe, is a genial young fellow forced to surmount obstacle after obstacle from the moment that he sets foot in Israel. Unknown to this pilgrim, the Holy Land is also a modern capitalist society driven by material concerns. He's grabbed by Israeli customs officers and unjustly accused of entering the country to work illegally. Unceremoniously thrown into jail, James is freed by a sleazy businessman whose entire staff consists of undocumented workers he procures by bribing local officials. The penniless James, stripped of his passport and pressed into labor, must now navigate harsh new surroundings and thrive without being corrupted. Director/co-screenwriter Ra'anan Alexandrowicz gives the film a satirical edge that's never dulled by its legitimate sentiment. His hero's happiness and salvation are paramount, but Alexandrowicz doesn't shy away from skewering the baser aspects of Israeli society.  
cinematronic
cinematronic


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