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Tikkun 

Wednesday, Jun 15 2016
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David Lynch once described Erasherhead as "a dream of dark and troubling things." Avishai Sivan's Tikkun isn't quite as surreal, but it's dark, troubling, often follows dream logic (not just when the characters are dreaming), and is also shot in glorious black and white. Haim-Aaron (Aharon Traitel) is a young Orthodox scholar in Jerusalem who feels restricted by the rigors of his faith, but cannot express it. During a self-imposed fast, Haim-Aaron accidentally conks his head and is declared legally deceased for a Talmudically-significant 40 minutes. His kosher-butcher father (Khalifa Natour) revives him after the paramedics could not, but Haim-Aaron finds himself more troubled by his sheltered Hasidic life than ever, while his father struggles with the notion that, by having for all intents and purposes resurrected his son, he went against G-d's will. The spellbinding Tikkun is equal parts profane and affecting as Haim-Aaron straddles the lines between religion and secularity, life and death, and what he's allowed to do and what he wants to do — including some infractions which are minor in the scheme of things, and one which could well get Tikkun banned in some municipalities. While resonant of past survivor stories like Crash and Fearless, to compare Tikkun to other films is not to take away from its own haunting, unnerving brilliance.

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Sherilyn Connelly

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