A good movie starts with an idea. In the case of Holy Rollers, a news item about a drug bust involving Hasidic Jews from Brooklyn, New York inspired a novice producer to believe that this could be the springboard for a film…and he was right. Holy Rollers is a piece of fiction inspired by that factual incident. It’s modest in its ambitions but realizes them fully, in a deceptively simple, stragithforward film that’s both satisfying and thought-provoking.
Jesse Eisenberg is well cast as Shmuel, or Sam, a young man who’s working with his father in the garment business and studying to be a rabbi. Yet he feels restless and dissatisfied, frustrated over his family’s chronic lack of money. This makes him susceptible to the advances of—
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