Shalom Life | April 19, 2014

Movie Review: 'Reuniting the Rubins'

The British film tells the story of a grandmother who wants to reunite her family for a Passover seder

By: Ilan Mester

Published: December 12th, 2011 in Culture » Film » Reviews

Movie Review: 'Reuniting the Rubins'

Reuniting the Rubins is one of those movies that aims to be touching and funny all at once. The British film tells the story of a grandmother who tries to bring together her dysfunctional family for a Passover seder.

The movie stars Timothy Spall (who played Peter Pettigrew in the Harry Potter franchise) as Lenny Rubin, a retired lawyer who’s ready to embark on a fancy cruise. But his vacation is cut short -- in fact, the cruise hadn’t even set sail -- when he learns that his mother (Honor Blackman) is in the hospital.

“I don’t want my family reunited over my dead body,” she tells him, using good old fashioned Jewish guilt.

As a Holocaust survivor, Gran Rubin lost most of her family during the war. “I’ve watched all my family die, Lenny,” she tells her son. “Before I die I want to watch your family live.”

She wants the entire family to come together for a Passover seder. But for that, Lenny has to reunite his four children who are living their lives in very different ways -- in equally different places.

Danny Rubin (Battlestar Galactica’s James Callis) is a successful businessman who seems to be glued to his Bluetooth. His sister, Andie (Rhona Mitra), is an eco-activist who lives in Africa. Their brother Yona (Hugh O’Conor) is a Rabbi who resides in Jerusalem with his family and their other sibling (Asier Newman) is a Buddhist monk.

A good chunk of the film is spent on Lenny tying to convince all of his children to come together for the seder, which needless to say turns into a difficult task.

Both Spall and Blackman deliver solid performances. And the rest of the cast -- which also features Blake Harrison (The Inbetweeners) and Theo Stevenson (Horrid Henry: The Movie) -- are talented as well.

Reuniting the Rubins isn’t the most innovative movie and its storyline is predictable. But it’s a nice first feature film effort from director Yoav Factor.

James Franco and Idina Menzel Set For Easter Bonnet Competition James Franco and Idina Menzel Set For Easter Bonnet Competition TrendingSpielberg’s Latest Project: A Film About a Jew Who Becomes a Priest Spielberg’s Latest Project: A Film About a Jew Who Becomes a Priest TrendingJewish Top 10s: Bible Movies Jewish Top 10s: Bible Movies Trending
 

James Franco’s Ex-Manager Sued for Embezzling Money From the Actor

April 18, 2014 | By Sarah Bauder
James Franco’s Ex-Manager Sued for Embezzling Money From the Actor

James Levy is being sued by his former partners at James Levy Management

Read More

James Franco and Idina Menzel Set For Easter Bonnet Competition

April 18, 2014 | By Ashley Baylen
James Franco and Idina Menzel Set For Easter Bonnet Competition

Franco and Menzel join Bryan Cranston, Fran Drescher and others at the event benefitting AIDS.

Read More

Spielberg’s Latest Project: A Film About a Jew Who Becomes a Priest

April 18, 2014 | By Ashley Baylen
Spielberg’s Latest Project: A Film About a Jew Who Becomes a Priest

The 'Schindler's List' director joins 'The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara'

Read More

Jewish Top 10s: Bible Movies

April 18, 2014 | By Zak Edwards
Jewish Top 10s: Bible Movies

In honor of Passover, we look at some of the best feature films that reinterpret stories from the Bible

Read More

Emotional Pain Isn't Just in Your Head

April 18, 2014 | By Abigail Klein Leichman
Emotional Pain Isn't Just in Your Head

A new Israeli-US study provides breakthrough in understanding the brain mechanisms that cause physical pain resulting from depression

Read More

A Children's Haggadah Made By Children [VIDEO]

April 18, 2014 | By Ynet News
A Children's Haggadah Made By Children [VIDEO]

Created by students of Rav Elio Toaff nursery school in Rome, 'cheerful Haggadah' is specially made for other children, not only Jewish

Read More

Italian Politician Mocks Primo Levi Holocaust Poem

April 18, 2014 | By Graham Sigurdson
Italian Politician Mocks Primo Levi Holocaust Poem

Beppe Grillo, head of an anti-establishment movement, released the parody on his blog that Jewish activists have labelled an 'obscenity'

Read More

Jeremy Diamond: The Most Harmless Stalker Around

April 18, 2014 | By Jordan Mazza
Jeremy Diamond: The Most Harmless Stalker Around

We talk to the famous personal injury lawyer about advertisements, that photo of him and Rob Ford, and more

Read More

More Headlines