This review is brought to you in partnership with our friends at NQV Media
Following on from the recent release of Danish Boys and Latin Boys. NQV Media continues its run of curated short film collections with The Israeli Boys. A diverse collection of shorts from Israel covering subjects ranging from religion to family and relationships.
The beauty of short film collections always sits within the diversity of themes and ideas brought to the screen, and with The Israeli Boys this diversity once again finds a voice. Not only challenging cultural and societal barriers. But also inspiring with discussions around modern gay relationships and sex. While each of the six shorts provides the viewer with a new perspective on gay culture, gender identity and masculinity in Israel. And while, as with all short collections, some films are stronger than others. They each provide a unique window into experience, discrimination and equality.
Opening the collection is Three directed by Lior Soroka. Where the challenges of opening up a relationship to a third party take centre stage in Tel Aviv. When twenty-something Udi, agrees to go along with his partner Nimrod’s proposal to have a threesome with another man. A decision Udi struggles to accept, but one that ultimately leads to him meeting Or. His partners artistic muse. However, as the night comes to an end, its Udi and not his partner who begins to rethink his relationship goals.
Also from Lior Soroka the beautiful After His Death explores the hidden secrets of a family in mourning. The life of their recently departed father and his secret male partner finding the light of day. A secret the families mother has kept silent from her children for decades.
Meanwhile A Trip to the Desert written by Nizan Lotem and Lior Haen takes us on a desert hike with three best friends. But a trip designed to be a fun escape, soon tests the bonds of all three’s friendship. As Yossi disappears, while Lior’s sexuality becomes a heated discussion with the religious Elad. The interface between religious belief, friendship and sexuality testing both friends as their relationship is redefined and challenged.
While in the gay love story Rubber Dolphin directed by Ori Aharon. Two men find more than just sex in each others arms following a casual meet. As the heat of desire leads to debates on sexual roles, relationship goals and intimacy. However, all nights are eventually broken by daylight. And all casual rendezvous eventually end in either connection or separation.
Finally The Israeli Boys offers us two films exploring gender and masculinity. Stav written by Michal Haggiag follows a young trans man working the streets of the city. While also exploring the perceived need to rescue people from harm. But in turn failing to understand their life and the reasons for their actions. While Leave of Absence written by Moshe Rosenthal explores masculinity from the perspective of an ageing teacher. Whose life, passion and energy have hit the buffers of older age. The energy and passion of youth rekindled briefly after a meeting with three of his old students.
The Israeli Boys continues NQV’s drive to bring us some of the best short LGBTQ films from around the world. While ensuring their curated collections offer a diversity of themes and views. And with more collections on the way we can’t wait to see where in the world NQV takes us next.
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