Izydi!.. (1991)

Genres - Comedy Drama  |   Run Time - 89 min.  |   Countries - Russia  |  
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Synopsis by Clarke Fountain

Despite the fact that he is Jewish, Motl Rabinovich and his family have always gotten along well with his village neighbors. Even the fact that he's opening up what appears will be a successful dairy-products business provokes no resentment, because Motl has always been ready with a helping hand, a welcoming drink of vodka, and a friendly word. However, despite that, he frequently worries about the pogroms that plague his co-religionists elsewhere in Russia and fears that he and his family will perish in one. The only person in his village that Motl doesn't trust is a neighbor who is always coming by to complain about how he's mistreated by everyone. One day, that neighbor hears that elsewhere in the province a pogrom is beginning. He wants to be on hand at Motl's house to lend a hand to the Jew-killers and rushes on over. When he gets there, he finds that he's the only person there. Embarrassed, and wishing to cover his tracks, he asks for (and receives) a drink of vodka from his wary neighbor. When the pogrom looks like it is spreading, Motl, who fears that outsiders will be coming to abuse or kill him and his family, flees. However, he soon returns to his village, and he and the villagers work out an agreement: they will make sure that outsiders hear the sort of stories they evidently want to hear about how the villagers have persecuted and abused their Jew, ensuring a peaceable situation all around. The director of this film, Dmitry Astrakhan, later directed two popular crowd-pleasers: Ty u menya odna (You're My Only One) and Vsyo budet khorosho (Everything Will Be Alright).