Combustible Celluloid
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With: Lior Ashkenazi, Carolina Peters, Knut Berger, Gideon Shemer, Yousef 'Joe' Sweid, Eyal Rozales, Ernest Lenart, Natali Shilman
Written by: Gal Uchovsky
Directed by: Eytan Fox
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Language: English, German and Hebrew with English subtitles
Running Time: 104
Date: 02/05/2004

Walk on Water (2005)

2 Stars (out of 4)

Tourist Trap

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Israeli director Eytan Fox's exciting 2003 feature Yossi & Jagger told a lean, punchy story with an economy of images, taking clever, effective shortcuts to define complex relationships. Now with a bigger budget and a much longer running time, Fox has opted instead to use long stretches of talk to do the job for him. A handsome hitman, Eyal (Lior Ashkenazi, from the excellent Late Marriage) is assigned to rout out an aged Nazi by befriending the old fiend's grandchildren, Pia (Carolina Peters) and Axel (Knut Berger). Posing as a travel guide, he takes Axel, who is gay, all around Israel and the two men talk: Eyal coming to terms with his homophobia and Axel his general cluelessness about his family. The characters change in dissatisfying ways, through verbal exchanges rather than through any organic character growth. In the end, the film desperately tries to establish a visual through-line with one of those dreadful montages comprised of scenes from the film you just saw. However, Fox does handle the climactic confrontation with some flourish, and he may yet be a talent to watch.

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