A Tale of Love and Darkness (2015) - Biography, Drama, History

Hohum Score



The story of Amos Oz's youth, set against the backdrop of the end of the British Mandate for Palestine and the early years of the State of Israel. The film details the young man's relationship with his mother and his beginnings as a writer, while looking at what happens when the stories we tell become the stories we live.

Director: Natalie Portman
Stars: Natalie Portman, Gilad Kahana
Length: 95 Minutes
PG Rating: PG-13
Reviews: 3 out of 25 found boring (12%)

One-line Reviews (16)

This is a slow-moving film (in the best possible way), focusing on the Oz family and their surroundings.

Amos Oz's memoir of his mother's enlivening imagination, disenchantment and mortal despair is a riveting human drama.

It is a self-inflicted wound exacerbated by her own mother's verbal cruelty, one that is manifested by insomnia, migraine headaches, and a long struggle with depression that ended with her suicide at the young age of 38.

Truly one of the most boring and depressing films I have ever seen .

And an even bigger problem are perhaps the dialogues and also the voice-overs because these sound as pretentious as the film's title and they are there on many many occasions.

They also create an intriguing blend of realistic, surrealistic, and symbolic images.

Portman's efforts behind and in front of the camera are very admirable; her promise as a director is highly confident and most of all, her content is riveting, just not in this film.

As Fania's growing depression and her drift from reality dominates the landscape, the film loses a measure of dramatic impact, yet it remains compelling and literate, attesting to the way the promise of Israel has been shattered by strident voices fighting centuries-old struggles for domination.

This is the most boring movie I have seen for a while.

Meanwhile, if you are in the mood for an intriguing foreign film about a family in the middle of Israel's birth of a nation, I would readily recommend "A Tale of Love and Darkness".

the more unpredictable-tenuous one encountered in pre & post-WWII Jerusalem.

As other reviewers have indicated, it's a poetic film, and I wound up absorbing it the way I might a poem.

Oz's analysis is presented as an intriguing blend of second-hand knowledge of his parents' early life, facts he knows about his parents from first-hand experience (often from spying on them), life-lessons his mother taught him, lessons he learned from real-life experiences, metaphors he discovered in the stories that he and his mother created together for fun, and symbolism he found in the etymology of Hebrew words taught to him by his father.

For example, during one of the storytelling sequences, they present a stunning image of black birds filling up a white sky to create an image similar to an M.

Boring and doesn't show what you want to see .

This may have been a fine choice, as the change of perspective and the decryption of the character of the young woman who came to Mandatory Palestine from Europe before the breaking of the war, her cultural shock, the building of the relationship with her son, the facing of historical developments and family crisis ending in the suicide that marked the biography of the writer - all these make of some fascinating material.