The Cousin

New York Jewish Film Festival


Tuesday, January 16, 2018
9 – 10:35 pm

In this darkly comic thriller, progressive-minded Israeli actor Naftali (writer-director Tzahi Grad) hires Palestinian handyman Fahed (Ala Fakka) to do some work in his home. When a young girl is assaulted nearby, the neighbors immediately begin to suspect Fahed, and so Naftali steps up as the lone voice in Fahed’s defense. Grad cleverly evokes the moral complexities through Naftali, who is no Atticus Finch. Grad portrays him as a comically stubborn and self-righteous actor—one who, in the film, is developing a reality show about bridging the gap between Israelis and Palestinians—who must reckon with the uncomfortable realization that he, too, might be letting his politics cloud his reason.

The Cousin, 2017