Elie Wajeman (who is shown below). It also stars two currently rising actors of note and one well-known director, this time playing that older and very problematic brother.
ALIYAH, which means, as closely as I can figure, making some kind of formal commitment to one's Jewish roots so that, in this case, our hero -- a petty criminal who luckily has as yet no criminal record, or all bets would be off -- can officially enter the state of Israel. His mother was Jewish, so that part is A-OK, but he has neither knowledge of the Hebrew language nor of anything much else about the place he intends to go and live and, one hopes, prosper. What he does have is this really difficult-because-drug-addicted older brother, Issac, who seems to feel that his kid bro, Alex, should forever be there to offer him help. Ah, the addicted: they're always some else's responsibility, never their own.
Pio Marmaï (shown above), either, for I have seen this guy a couple of time previous -- Living on Love Alone (click and scroll down) and Delicacy -- and he's been just fine, though in both films not the major presence that he is here. More specificity in characterization from the screenwriters (Wajeman co-wrote with Gaëlle Macé) and from the actor himself might have helped. Instead, our guy just kind of doodles along, but as he's cute, sexy and relatively interesting, we follow.
Cédric Kahn (above, left), Issac proves the most compelling figure in the film: needy, despicable, poignant and beyond sad.
Cinema Village and on Friday, June 21, in Los Angeles at Laemmle's Music Hall 3. (NOTE: Filmmaker Elie Wajeman will be present at the Cinema Village this Friday and Saturday evenings for a Q&A after the 7:30 screening only.) Other playdates around the country can be found by clicking here then scrolling down.