Opens 25 March in Australian cinemas.
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Golden Voices is a charming little oddity from Belarusian filmmaker Evgeny Ruman, who clearly co-wrote the screenplay (with cinematographer and first-time screenwriter Ziv Berkovich) from experience. Ruman immigrated with his family to Israel in 1990, along with another 185,227 Soviets from the former USSR. (148,000 went the next year, capping a huge two-year mass migration). His film tells the story of two of them, a mature, childless couple leaving behind a career as ‘dubbers’ – voice actors skilled in speaking Russian dialogue for foreign films. Their arrival in Israel sets them on a new adventure but with new challenges that test their marriage.
The milieu is the most fascinating element here; Ruman paints a vivid picture of a unique expat community that he was clearly a part of. There’s a lot to learn about just how Israel works as it absorbs large immigrant bodies. The couple are able to live within a Russian-speaking community, but they are still strangers in a strange land. Their trials and tribulations are not particularly enthralling, but that land is interesting enough.