Set in Haifa in the summer of 1968, The Matchmaker is a tender story of love, loss and survival in the aftermath of the Second World War. Director Avi Nesher explores a fascinating juncture in Israeli history, where an embryonic society still reeling from the Holocaust is beset by the cultural-sexual upheaval of the sixties.
Sixteen-year-old Arik is at loose ends one summer when he gets a job offer from a mysterious old friend of his father’s named Yankele Bride. A Holocaust survivor, Bride makes his living as a matchmaker and hires Arik to scout potential clients throughout the bustling port city. The diverse characters he meets on the job open Arik’s eyes to a world of wonder, pain and longing, offering him glimpses into unspeakable darkness and the depths of human love. There is Clara, a beautiful, fragile woman whom Bride loves from afar; Sylvia, a survivor of Josef Mengele’s Nazi experiments who yearns for a partner; and Meir, a librarian whose search for love leads him to commit an extraordinary act of malice. Then Arik falls in love for the first time, a development that brings surprising consequences.
AICE Israeli Film Festival
The New York Times
‘effortlessly draw[s] you into its charmingly eccentric world’
The Hollywood Reporter
Winner, Best Actor & Best Actress, Israeli Academy Award
Winner, Best Director, Chicago International Film Festival