La Petite Jerusalem (DVD)

Directed by Karin Albou

Release Year: 2005
Running Time: 94
UPC: 7 38329 04962 1
Color Type: Color
Country: France
Language: French w/English subt. [audio]
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Writer Karin Albou
Directed by Karin Albou

Winner of the script prize at the 2005 Cannes Film Festival, Karin Albou's La Petite Jérusalem pits intimacy against sex and ideology against divinity, "with candor, sympathy and excellent cinematography," (Nathan Lee, The New York Times). Offering an unusual glimpse into an unseen, cloistered world, the film sensitively lays bare the souls and passions of two sisters in search of sexual and spiritual identity.

In a Paris suburb nicknamed Little Jerusalem, a family of Sephardic Orthodox immigrants shares a low-income apartment. Beautiful, teenaged Laura (Fanny Valette) distances herself from her family's religion and her own burgeoning desire by devoting every waking moment to intellectual discipline and secular philosophy. Mathilde (Elsa Zylberstein, That Day), Laura's married older sister, worries that strict observance of the Torah's marital codes has driven her husband Ariel (Bruno Todeschini, Code Unknown) into the bed of another. When Laura falls under the spell of Djamel, a handsome Muslim journalist, and Mathilde discovers that her worst fears are true, the two very different sisters find themselves in very similar crises.

"I won't be a slave to my senses," says the rigorously rational Laura. But as her sexual awakening consumes her, Laura risks rejection from her own community and harm at the hands of anti-Semitic street gangs. At the same time, Mathilde struggles to reconcile her traditional responsibilities to her husband with moral law, personal modesty, and physical desire. A film of graceful delicacy and luminous sensuality, La Petite Jerusalem subtly depicts the personal journeys taken by two modern women raised in an ancient faith.


DVD Extras Include:
  • An Interview with Karin Albou
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Stills Gallery
  • Optional English subtitles
  • Enhanced for 16x9 TVs

"RICH AND GENTLY INTOXICATING... Albou opens up the physical and psychological spaces of two strong Jewish women..." -­ Nathan Lee, The New York Times

"AN ENGAGING STYLE...TOP-NOTCH PERFORMANCES." - Bilge Ebiri, NEW YORK MAGAZINE

  • OFFICIAL selection cannes film festival

Interested in bringing La Petite Jerusalem to your school or library? If you'd like to have an in-class viewing, on-campus screening, or purchase the DVD for your library's collection, please contact Estelle Grosso or call (212) 629-6880 with your request.

La Petite Jerusalem may also be available with Public Performance Rights (PPR) and Digital Site Licensing (DSL) for colleges and universities. To purchase the DVD with PPR or DSL, please contact Estelle Grosso or call (212) 629-6880. Click here to learn more at Kino Lorber Edu.



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