Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Review and Airing of grievances: The Hebrew Hammer

It's shlock, but it's not awful shlock.

I was fully prepared to hate The Hebrew Hammer, but it's not that bad. It's not that good, but it's not that bad, either. I was afraid they'd blow the import of Hanukkah out of proportion or throw in meaningless Yiddish words only because they sound funny. The movie does no such thing.

It does, however, four things that bother me. In increasing irksomeness:

  • In the movie they don't say shul or synagogue. I know, there are good, observant, non-Reform Jews who call it temple. I just don't personally know any. It bugs me. It sounds so polytheistic, having all these little "temples".
  • Why not say "HaShem" when you pretend that you're saying a brucha in the opening theme song? I never understood that. It's such a small thing. And then later your protagonist complains about taking the Lord's name in vain?
  • When he lists the stuff on the seder plate in alphabetical order, they should be in the Hebrew alphabet's order. If I'm using that question to test someone for Jewishness and they list zroa זרוע after karpas כרפס, that's instant disqualification.
  • A good Jewish girl going downtown with gusto. Maybe it's like the temple thing and it actually happens. I'm just saying I've never heard of it.

Wow. I regretted that last one before I even started typing it.

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