The Band's Visit (2007)
The Alexandria Ceremonial Police Orchestra has been invited from Egypt to Petah Tikvah, Israel to play at the opening of an Arabic cultural center. However, when one of the band's members mistakes their destination, they wind up in BETAH Tikvah, where they are not at all expected. Dina, a restaurant owner, takes pity on them and finds lodging for all 8 men for the night. Over the course of the next 24 hours, the band and the town get to know one another, as they wait for someone to figure out where the band is supposed to be.
I really enjoyed this movie. It is not loud or flashy - I don't think there is a single special effect in the whole film - but I was engrossed from beginning to end. Often, instead of dialogue the actors would communicate simply with facial expressions, or body language, and their simple movements were able to convey as much as entire solliloquies. Parts of the movie were hysterical - the entire scene at the roller skating rink was laugh-out-loud funny - but the humor was subtle, in keeping with the tone of the film.
There was also a strain of lonliness that ran throughout, giving the movie a bittersweet feel that was never overplayed. And, of course, the love of music that, as Tewfiq says, is as essential as a man's soul. There was so much to love in this quiet, simple movie - I highly recommend it!
This counts toward:
Orbis Terrarum Film Mini-Challenge - Israel