This surprising and thought-provoking Israeli/Polish co-production charts the experiences of Tadek, a ten-year-old anti-Semitic boy in 1960s Poland, who yearns for Australia. Things get complicated when his older brother Andrzej involves him in a neo-Nazi street gang that beats up Jewish children, and Tadek’s mother reveals she is actually a secret Jewish survivor of the Warsaw Ghetto. She tells Tadek his dream has come true and they are emigrating to Australia – though this turns out to be Haifa, Israel. When their mother fails to find employment, Tadek and Andrzej are dispatched to a kibbutz, and a culture shock they’re ill-equipped to cope with.
Jakub Wróblewski is hugely watchable and convincing as the young anti- hero, whose angel face belies his precocious, streetwise naughtiness. Both writer Ami Drozd and co-producer Marek Rozenbaum emigrated to Israel from Poland which helps to bring authenticity to this gentle, eye-opening film. Dan Susman