Never fall in love with a bartender.

David (Samuel H. Levine) is a 16 yr old Russian Jewish immigrant in 1986 Brooklyn who has just lost his grandmother. His old world parents want him to follow in their footsteps, but after too much vodka and some stolen glances at his fellow man in the shower, ends his private school education and he starts his final school years at a public school. He appeases his family by dating a shiksa, goes to temple with his grandfather, and has sexual relationship with Bruno (Alex Hurt) a bartender at Nowhere Bar.

After getting his grandfather in to an affordable housing unit in Brighton Beach, he befriends an older couple and learns that the life you think your going to have can change for the better or get worse at a moment’s notice. David will learn to come to term with his sexuality and hopefully become a well rounded human being within his community while learning from his faith that everything in life is up to an interpretation and that the world is full of grey areas.

Based on a short story by David Bezmozgis and adapted by Daniel Pearle and, in his narrative feature directorial debut, Eric Steel, Minyan is a subtle coming of age story that doesn’t pander or preach. We follow a young kid during a time of self discovery that is trial and error, but reminds us of a time where we were looking for answers to a question we didn’t know how to ask yet.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

MINYAN will screen as part of the 2021 Jewish International Film Festival’s program. Tickets for screenings from February 21 until March 15 are available HERE

JIFF 2021 Review – ‘Minyan’

Reviewed online (screening at JIFF 2021), February 9, 2021. Rating: TBC. Running time: 118 min.

PRODUCTION: Producers: Luca Borghese, Luigi Caiola, Ben Howe. Executive producers: Anne Carey, Johnny Belkin-Holland.

CREW: Director: Eric Steel. Screenplay: Daniel Pearle, Eric Steel (based on the short story by David Bezmozgis). Cinematography: Ole Bratt Birkeland. Editing: Ray Hubley. Music: David Krakauer, Kathleen Tagg.

CAST: Samuel H. Levine, Alex Hurt, Brooke Bloom, Mark Margolis, Carson Meyer, Zane Pais, Chris Perfetti.

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