Comedy / Drama


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August 04, 2016 at 08:22 AM


Ian Hart as Victor Gerrard
Jonathan Pryce as Nat Dayan
Philip Davis as Sam Cotton
Pauline Collins as Joanna Silverman
720p 1080p
686.53 MB
23.976 fps
1hr 34 min
P/S 6 / 31
1.43 GB
23.976 fps
1hr 34 min
P/S 4 / 21

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Red-125 8 / 10

Another "comedy" that's interesting, but not very funny

This year, the Rochester International Jewish Film Festival made a good-faith effort to screen more comedies. (Apparently, that's what last year's viewers requested.) I admire their effort, but, from my perspective, most of the films simply weren't funny. In fact, the only film that I found truly funny was the French movie, "Serial Bad Weddings." (I'll post a review of that film in a day or two.) The problem--in this context--is that "Serial Bad Weddings" wasn't really a Jewish film. "Dough," which was a Jewish film, wasn't that funny. It's about Nat, a tough old man who is trying to maintain his Jewish bakery, and the young Muslim man from Darfur whom he hires to help him.

The film was directed by John Goldschmidt. Jonathan Pryce stars as the baker, and he's a brilliant actor. The rest of the actors were quite good, although the two villains--one a drug dealer and one a businessman--are ridiculous stock characters. They should have been shown with tall black hats, twirling their mustaches. I thought the second best actor in the film was Melanie Freeman, who played Nat's granddaughter, Olivia. Her role was to be bonded to her grandfather, and her job was to be adorable. Adorable child actors can be truly tedious, but not in this case. Freeman really was adorable, and the screen lit up when she was on it.

This was a pretty good film. I believe it would have been better without the comic parts. The movie had a point to make about family businesses, traditions, and reaching out to people who need your help. I would have moved forward in those directions, and not have worried about trying to be funny. The director and producer made a choice, which is what directors and producers do. I disagree with that choice, which is what reviewers sometimes do.

We saw this film at the Dryden Theatre, as part of the highly praised Rochester International Jewish Film Festival. It will work well on the small screen.

Reviewed by Ron Schultz (creativesg-02035) 9 / 10

Dough Rises to the Occasion

Dough rises to the occasion with sweetness, depth and delightful humor. With Jonathan Pryce and Jerome Holder giving us textured and nuanced portrayals of growing trust, and appreciation, they also demonstrate how we can successfully meet "the other" with care and compassion. Dough provides us will all the ingredients as to how the simple act of being human transforms every bite we take from this morsel of life we get. While the film's premise offers many "highlights" the cohesive quality of the film, the honest feelings generated and the love that emerges, is not only touching, it's enlivening. This film is far more than an ethnic sampling, it's most importantly how we can move beyond our prejudice and bias and find our humanity. John Goldschmidt's direction continually points us toward the goodness of who we are, and Pryce and Holder masterfully deliver the goods. This was a wonderful and uplifting film, like eating a piece of chocolate chip rugelach without any of the guilt.

Reviewed by Paul Allaer 6 / 10

Light-hearted foodie-comedy that preaches tolerance (for religion AND marijuana)

"Dough" (2015 release from the UK; 94 min.) brings the story of an elderly Jewish baker, Nat Dayan. As the movie opens, Dayan is awakened at 4 am by his clock alarm, and off he goes to his beloved "Dayan & Son" bakery for another long day. Much to his dismay, his assistant unexpectedly gives his notice, and Dayan puts up an "Apprentice Wanted" sign. In a parallel story, we get to know Ayyash, a teenage Muslin boy who recently emigrated to England with his mum from somewhere in Africa. Ayyash is in a bit of trouble due to selling marijuana on the side. His mum pushes Ayyash to apply for the vacant apprenticeship. At this point we're not even 15 min. into the movie, but to tell you more would spoil your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.

Couple of comments: this movie is directed by John Goldschmidt, a veteran of mostly British TV work. Here he tackles a light-hearted story about how fate brings together an old Jew and a teenage Muslim, and how wonderful religious tolerance and mutual respect can be, all the while also suggesting that the occasional doughnut or muffin spiked with marijuana may not be such a bad thing either. There is nothing much surprising in the entire movie, but it's all done in a rather pleasant and inoffensive, if at time borderline preachy, way. Jonathan Pryce as the old Jewish Baker brings a fine performance. The boy playing Ayyash has an easy smile on his face, and the chemistry between these two lead characters is obvious. Interesting is that before the movie started, there was a 30 second "introduction" clip by Pauline Collins, who plays the owner of the shop space, to remind us how important religious tolerance is and to enjoy the movie. That was a little weird, I must say.

"Dough" opened without any pre-release fanfare or buzz at my local art-house theater here in Cincinnati a number of weeks ago. I wasn't really planning on seeing it, but since it's now been running for so long, I figured I wanted to see for myself why this movie must be doing so well that it's still running after all these weeks. The Sunday early evening screening where I saw this at was attended very nicely, somewhat to my surprise. The crowd absolutely loved the movie, laughing and chuckling at all the right moments. If they keep packing'em in like this, I imagine "Dough" will stay in the theater for a while longer. If you are in the mood for a light-hearted foodie-comedy about a Jewish bakery with marijuana-spiked wares, I might suggest you check this out, be it in the theater, on VOD or eventually on DVD/Blu-ray.

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