Thy Father’s Chair Screen 88 of 6 reviews

Thy Father’s Chair

2015

Thy Father’s Chair Poster
  • The movie is quiet and quietly moving and quite different from “Hoarders” in its steady pace and poetic vérité style. It’s a story of unlikely friendship — not to mention a potentially very good promotional tool for Home Clean Home, which does a thorough and, more to the point, exquisitely sensitive job.

  • This amusing, exceptionally well-crafted documentary takes as its subject a pair of aging Orthodox Jewish twins with hoarding tendencies . . . There's a universal human metaphor here, for what's to be held onto and what's to be let go, which finds its resolution in a quietly moving final image of acceptance and peace.

  • Concentrating squarely on the apartment's interiors but occasionally venturing outside for a welcome breath or two of fresh air, Tibaldi and Lora commendably eschew non-diegetic music until the closing credits. Instead, they craft a subtly immersive soundscape that makes particularly strong use of low-key susurrations — their source revealed as a grumbling, noisy boiler in the horror-movie-style cellar.

  • Jewish tradition encourages questioning and the dialectical method. One arrives at one's faith through challenge, not blind acceptance. And this is precisely how Thy Father's Chairdiffers from the TV show it most closely resembles. While there is no question that Avraham must clear out his home to avoid a hefty fine . . . , the film displays a patience and a respect for the man and his mess. There is a recognition that even the layers of apparent junk represent his physical memories.

  • The camera stays close to the identical faces of Avraham and Shraga. There's a gentle intimacy to the approach. The film could have felt voyeuristic, or, worse, mean-spirited.

  • Shot with great attention to this tiny space, the film induces claustrophobia; a closing dedication to Chantal Akerman, another portraitist of restrictive domestic spaces, is earned.