The Petrified Garden
<i>Film Comment</i>calls Amos Gitai"Israel's most internationally recognized filmmaker--and its most controversial,"and this nine-film retrospective includes some of his provocative works. Gitai uses both documentary and fictional styles to tell stories of Israeli life and the Jewish Diaspora, frequently daring to speak some unpopular truths. The Wexner Center has shown such recent Gitai films as<i>Kadosh</i>and<i>Kippur,</i>but this series provides an illuminating cross-sampling of his entire career, now entering its third decade.
In The Petrified Garden, one of his least-seen pictures, Gitai again returns to the legend of the Golem and the theme of exile, this time in post-Soviet Russia.
Set in Russia after the fall of the Soviet Union, The Petrified Garden follows an art dealer who travels to Leningrad/St. Petersburg and Birobidzhan (Stalin's Siberian "homeland" for the Jews). There he hopes to reunite a huge sculpted hand that he's inherited with the rest of a mythical statue. With Hanna Schygulla and a score by Simon and Markus Stockhausen. (87 mins.)
Admission$5 students (tickets required)