The Wonders (2013)

AVI NESHER

Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BB

Israel2013.  58th Century Entertainment, Artomas Communications, Metro Communications, United King Films.  Screenplay by Avi Nesher, .  Cinematography by .  Produced by , , Avi Nesher, .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  Toronto International Film Festival 2013.  

Cartoonist Ariel sees shady men lead a rabbi into the apartment above his Jerusalem apartment and grows suspicious, particularly when he starts to notice bright lights emanating from the apartment that could be indications of otherworldly powers.  Upon investigation he discovers that the man in there is being held captive and has connections to the disappearance of a nationally famous spiritual leader who has gotten involved with the wrong crowd.  Then he meets a pushy private investigator whose beautiful client captures Ariel’s fancy and gets him to do some spying for her, planting hidden cameras in the apartment so that she can supposedly keep an eye on the man she claims to be connected to.  It sounds promising, but it plays out without any energy and includes bits of animation that are meant to be capricious but just stand out awkwardly in what is already an uneven mess.  For a comedy it’s awfully dry, with very few laughs and dull characters, and does not supply in twists what it lacks in jokes, a long-winded, unrewarding affair that is nearly impossible to sit through.

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