The Farewell Party
Drama /Black comedy, Germany/ Israel, 93 min., 2014
German release: 24.09.2015
A German-Israel production between: TWENTY TWENTY VISION, Pie Films, 2-Team Productions, Pallas Film GmbH
Israel Fim Fund, MDM – Mitteldeutsche Medienförderung
Distribution: Neue Visionen Filmverleih
Author: Tal Granit, Sharon Maymon
Director: Tal Granit, Sharon Maymon
Producer: Thanassis Karathanos, Haim Mecklberg, Estee Yacov-Mecklberg, Talia Kleinhendler
Ezekiel, 72, lives in a retirement home in Jerusalem with his wife Levana. Ezekiel is the resident inventor, always coming up with new original ways of making everyone’s life a little easier (such as a vibrating mouse for a Parkinson patient). When his best friend Max, who is suffering from a terminal illness, asks Ezekiel to help him end his life, he feels compelled to help his fried die in peace. Together with a retired veterinarian – who brings the tranquilizers, and a former police detective to clean up the evidence, he tries to figure out the best way to put Max to rest. The thing is no one in the group can bring themselves to actually kill Max, so Ezekiel invents (constructs?) a “Euthanasia Machine” that allows Max to press the button himself, and fulfill his own wish to die with dignity.
Levana, Ezekiel’s wife, does everything she can to stop them, but Yehezkel goes behind her back, and together the group of friends help Max end his suffering. When Levana, who suffers from early stage Alzheimer, realizes what they’ve done she calls them all murderers, and wants nothing to do with them.
Meanwhile word of the “Euthanasia Machine” begins to leak out, and old people from all over Jerusalem flock to the retirement home looking for a way to end suffering of their loved ones. They beg Ezekiel and his friends to help them. The group resists at first, but finally they find themselves in the Euthanasia business, traveling all over the country, granting people their last wish to die in peace, often in some bizarre settings.
Ezekiel is so distracted by all this; he refuses to realize that Levana’s condition is deteriorating. Levana realizes she’s one step away from not knowing her own granddaughter. She begins to understand that she may have misjudged her friends, and asks them to help her end her life before it is too late. Now Ezekiel is faced with an impossible dilemma, does he let his wife go peacefully, as he has done for so many others, or hold on to her life against her will.
|Actor / Actress:
|Ilan Dar||Dr. Daniel|
|Director of Photography||Tobias Hochstein|
|Art Director||Arad Sawat|
|Sound Design||Aviv Aldema|
|Sound||Stephan von Haase|
29.08.2014, 11. Venice Days
Festivals / awards (selection):
Toronto International Film Festival / World Cinema / Canada / 2014
Haifa International Film Festival / Israel / 2014
(Best actress award for Levana)
Valladolid International Film Festival / Competition / Spain / 2014
(Golden Spike Feature-length + Best actress award for Levana Finkelstein and Aliza)
Sofia International Film Festival / Bulgaria / 2015
Istanbul International Film Festival / Turkey / 2015
Festivals national / awards (selection):
Internationale Hofer Filmtage
Kirchliches Filmfestival Recklinghausen
Jüdisches Filmfestival Berlin & Potsdam
Fünf Seen Filmfestival