Toronto Jewish Film Festival 2020 (Online): Our Review of ‘The End of Love’

Toronto Jewish Film Festival 2020 (Online): Our Review of ‘The End of Love’

A Jewish family tries to keep it together despite having its members living in two countries. What helps bring this family together is technology, as they talk to each other on Skype. It makes bridging that divide in interesting ways. The film records Julie’s (Judith Chemla) voice while showing someone walking down a beach. It makes its audience assume, then, that it’s her walking down the beach. It’s personally hard to tell gender through someone’s feet.

The End of Love shows us that it’s actually her husband Yuval (Arieh Worthaler) walking down that beach. But what initially shows their union eventually signifies their separation. Yuval gets to enjoy Tel Aviv’s beaches and night life while Julie stays home in Paris. It then lets the audience associate Julie and Yuval’s experiences with their genders and nations. Immigration also plays a key, as both must choose between their countries or their jobs. The latter isn’t available everywhere.

Another factor furthering divide is their unique family situation. Yuval has an extended family while Julie only has her mother. This means that Yuval has slightly more power than Julie, especially when to raising a child miles away. The supporting characters obviously exist to add conflict to a situation already on the brink. But this also means that conflict comes for everywhere instead of the movie being able to modulate tense moments between the couple.

Another source of Yuval’s anxiety comes from Julie keeping her window open. He worries that Lenny might crawl off the window. That’s fair, but it seems like it propagates the idea that Julie is a worse mother than she really is. Despite those digressions, the film pulls back to show what it’s really about – keeping this family. And it keeps audiences guessing whether or not they’ll stick together.

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While Paolo Kagaoan is not taking long walks in shrubbed areas, he occasionally watches movies and write about them. His credentials are as follows: he has a double major in English and Art History. This means that, for example, he will gush at the art direction in the Amityville house and will want to live there, which is a terrible idea because that house has ghosts. Follow him @paolokagaoan on Instagram but not while you're working.
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