I’ll be the first to say that Synonyms does not look like the film for me. It does, however, look like a film for people who are better versed in cinéma vérité, and the work of co-writer/director Nadav Lapid, or who are more familiar the conflicts a young Israeli Jewish man experiences when attempting to assimilate to French culture. Obviously the jury of the 69th Berlin International Film Festival are such fine folks since they award the Israeli-French film, which also closed out the event, the top award, the Golden Bear. More awards are surely ahead for the future of Synonyms, but if you want to see what all the buzz is about, you can check out the first official U.S. trailer below.
Starring Tom Mercier, Quentin Dolmaire, and Louise Chevillotte, Synonyms arrives in U.S. theaters starting October 25th.
Watch the official U.S. trailer for Synonyms here:
Here’s the official synopsis for Synonyms:
In Paris, things do not exactly get off to a good start for the newly arrived Yoav. He knocks on the door of the flat where he’s supposed to stay, only to discover the place is empty. While he is taking a bath there, his belongings are stolen. Yet this young Israeli, who has arrived with such great expectations, will not be dissuaded that easily. Desperate to erase his origins, Yoav sees becoming French as his only hope for salvation. Step one is to replace his language. From now on, he will not utter a single word of Hebrew and his dictionary becomes his constant companion. The necessary visits to the Israeli embassy annoy Yoav – he finds his compatriots to be a total burden – but the naturalization test also has its pitfalls. And the young French couple whom he befriends has some rather strange ideas about how to help him.
Based on the real life experiences of writer-director Nadav Lapid’s (The Kindergarten Teacher, Policeman), Synonyms explores the challenges of putting down roots in a new place. Yoav’s attempts to find himself awaken past demons and open up an existential abyss in this tragicomic puzzle that wisely knows how to keep its secrets.