Samuel Maoz illuminates tragedy with simplicity and directness in the consummately crafted “Foxtrot,” an elegant telling of the reaction of an Israeli couple (Lior Ashkenazi, Sarah Adler) to their son’s death in the line of duty. Tempered with surrealism and dancing with an allegorical lilt, there are several levels of wisdom about love and life and loss in each scene, a level of serene, seemingly effortless dramatic craft that is all too rare. Maoz’s greatest gift is his ability to compose a studied narrative that also teases out meaning. And the performances! Watch the world crumble and emotions ripple and rumble across Ashkenazi’s features. To live is to suffer. To love is to suffer. Grief transforms: “Foxtrot” electrifies. 113m. (Ray Pride)
“Foxtrot” is now playing at Landmark Century and Wilmette.
Ray Pride is Newcity’s film critic and a contributing editor to Filmmaker magazine.
His multimedia history of Chicago “Ghost Signs” will be published later this year.