Originally produced in 1939, Edgar Ulmer’s (Detour, The Black Cat) Yiddish film classic has been newly-restored by the National Centre for Jewish Film. David Opatoshu and Helen Beverley are luminous as two passionate but poor and physically-disabled lovers who dream of a better life in Odessa. Both a romantic tale and a critique of shtetl life, the film is particularly timely in its depiction of how shtetl residents embrace superstition over science amidst a cholera outbreak. Ulmer’s moody cinematography underscores the plight of the shtetl inhabitants and reflects a painful awareness of the events that will soon devour European Jewry.
TJFF presents the Ontario premiere of the new restoration.