Skip to main content

Mensch - Toronto Jewish Film Festival Review

Canadian Premiere at the Toronto Jewish Film Festiva
in French with English subtitles
Director: Steve Suissa
Cast: Nicolas Cazalé, Sami Frey, Anthony Delon, Maurice Bénichou

The gentleman who introduced the film told the audience Mensch is a French caper film about a Jewish safecracker, and that pretty much sums up the plot. Sam is a good looking guy from a 'good' family in the produce business who gets off on living a life of crime.

It begins with a chase gone wrong and a young man dead, the explanation of which contains the twist in the story. Otherwise, the outlines of the story are familiar - the 30 something career criminal with a son who keeps getting drawn farther and farther into the big job to end all big jobs. The guy who supposedly wants out.

The film is shot in Euro-style realism in that not everyone is model good looking, (although Sam sure is easy on the eyes,) a sense of reality that extends to a script that portrays the drudgery of crime, those long hours of planning and sometimes risky fact finding that come before the electrifying moment of truth.

Sam is in love with an African-French woman, a reporter who naturally ferrets out the truth about him. If the story holds few surprises, that's compensated in the most part by the depth of the characters, even as we come to ever so slightly dislike the glib way Sam lies his way back and forth between the straight and criminal elements of his life. His young son is already a budding extortionist, disturbingly like his father in his easy justifications for what he's done.

Naturally, the two threads of his life start to intersect with increasingly ominous consequences. His son finds a gun tucked in the backseat of his buddy's car, and he has to get him to leave the room when another associate wants to snort coke on the coffee table. He's not an entirely likable character. Without giving too much away, let's just say that, in the end I was - like his girlfriend - unconvinced of his Mensch-ness.


Popular posts from this blog

Film News - imagineNATIVE Embargo Collective at the Berlin Film Fest

Hot Off the Presses:
(and gosh, doesn't that expression sound quaint these days?)

to have its European Premiere at the Berlin International Film Festival 2010
(Internationale Filmfestspiele Berlin 11.-21.02.10)

(Toronto, February 3rd, 2010) The imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival is pleased to announce the official selection of the festival’s Embargo Collective programme for the Forum Expanded section of this year’s Berlin International Film Festival. This programme of works was commissioned by the imagineNATIVE festival for its 10th anniversary and will have its European premiere Monday, February 15th, 8.30pm at Cinema Arsenal 2 and a repeat screening Wednesday, February 17th, 4pm at CinemaxX 6.

Curated by imagineNATIVE’s Artistic Director Danis Goulet, the Embargo Collective is an international group of seven Indigenous artists at the forefront of the changing global landscape of Indigenous cinema. Inspired by Lars von Trier’s The Five Obstructi…

Esmeralda Enrique Spanish Dance Company Spring 2013 Toronto Performances

From a media release:

The new season brings
Esmeralda Enrique Spanish Dance Company
to new heights and new audiences

March 20-24, 2013 - A Night in Madrid
April 25-28, 2013 - Annual Toronto Season - World Premiere of Portales

TORONTO : Following on the heels of Esmeralda Enrique Spanish Dance Company's (EESDC) 30th anniversary year where its production Aguas/Waters was named one of the top five dance shows of 2012 by NOW Magazine, the early months of 2013 are full of excitement and possibility for Esmeralda and the company, which brings the finest flamenco and Spanish Classical Dance to Toronto stages.

March 20-24, 2013 - A Night in Madrid
Company dancers Esmeralda Enrique and Paloma Cortés perform Spanish Classical dance with the celebrated Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir for A Night in Madrid featuring the Iberian flavoured music of composer Luigi Boccherini who made his home in Spain. His work is infused with the sounds of Spanish and gypsy folk music.

March 20-24 …

Guitar Rock | Happy Freuds - Echo Of Sounds Independent: May 31, 2019

Guitar Rock
Happy Freuds - Echo Of Sounds
Independent: May 31, 2019
Stream/Buy on Bandcamp
Stream it on Spotify

With tight musicians and intriguing lyrics, Happy Freuds delivers high energy guitar rock with stylistic flair on Echo Of Sounds, their debut release. Produced with a minimum of overdubs or fixes, the album consists of a mix of original material, rearrangements of works from others and selected, less known, classic rock.

A kinetic rhythm section is the bones of the music, offering interesting patterns that augment sometimes unexpected harmonic changes. It's brainy rock, in other words, meant for music lovers who can appreciate the quality. Teo's vocals are raspy and expressive, growly when necessary - perfect for the musical mode. Teo also covers lead guitar, adapt at ear worm leads, with a tone that can be clean or dirty as required

Their sound ranges from straight up hard rock in tracks like The Mountain to the pop-flavoured acoustic Background Noise and folky To …