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Film Review

By Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat


A Stranger Among Us
Directed by Sidney Lumet
Buena Vista Home Entertainment 07/92 DVD/VHS Feature Film

The Western spiritual tradition is richer, deeper, and more filled with joy than most modern men and women realize. In this drama directed by Sidney Lumet, Emily (Melanie Griffith) is a lonely cop whose obsession with work hides an inner emptiness. When she goes undercover in a Hasidic community to find a killer, she is baffled by the singlemindedness of these ardent Jewish believers. Through prayer, study, and ritual, they hallow all aspects of their lives. Emily is deeply changed by her friendships with the Rebbe’s son and daughter.

Halfway through A Stranger Among Us, it becomes clear that the filmmakers are less interested in solving the crime than in conveying the spiritual dynamism of the Hasidic community. Emily’s soul is stirred by her experience with these people and yours will be too.


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by Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
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