Shuroo (1991)

Run Time - 145 min.  |   Countries - Israel  |  
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Despite the almost endless parade of films from Israel which deal with excruciating political or social problems in a profoundly intimate, even myopic fashion, escapist comedy is a much-desired commodity there. This ground-breaking comedy received the Wolgin prize from the 1991 Jerusalem Film Festival at least partly as an acknowledgment that it sticks to comedy and avoids preaching of any kind. In the story, Shuroo (Moshe Ivgi) is an inveterate con man who has come up with perhaps his most skillful scheme: a self-fulfillment program for the spiritually impoverished. After getting interviewed on a television talk show, he is able to gather a group of loyal followers who are happy to have their pocketbooks milked of funds. This proceeds smoothly for him, and he meddles in the lives of his latest dupes, with comic results, until word of his unsavory background begins to get out and the tables are turned.