"Family Love Overcomes Prejudice"
THE OTHER SON is a French movie about two teenage boys in Israel and Gaza who discover they were accidentally switched at birth. THE OTHER SON is a well written and directed drama that critiques the national and religious prejudices between Israel and Gaza, with some brief foul language, implied drug use, brief lewd comments, and a mixed worldview.
THE OTHER SON is a French movie about two families. One family is Israeli and the other Palestinian.
Alon was in the Israeli Air Force. He expects his teenage son, Joseph, to follow in his footsteps. Although Joseph would rather pursue his music, he enrolls in the military anyway. Joseph isn’t accepted into the military, but what’s even more unexpected is that Joseph’s blood type doesn’t match his parents. After some further tests and an investigation into the matter, it’s discovered that, when Joseph was born, he was accidentally switched with another baby born at the same time. Joseph’s mother Orith refuses to believe this at first, but the evidence is clear that Joseph isn’t their son.
The hospital where the birth took place sets up a meeting between Alon and Orith and the other parents, Leila and Said. Leila and Said are just as shocked about the news. Their son, Yacine, just returned from school in France and is studying to be a doctor.
When Alon and Orith arrive for the meeting, things are worse than they thought. The other family happens to be Palestinian, from Gaza. The sons particularly take the news very hard. Everything they thought they were in terms of lineage, religion and nationality now seems false.
An awkward tension develops between the sons and their families. No one quite knows how to deal with the problem. Both Joseph and Yacine have a desire to meet their biological parents and get to know them. The two boys develop a friendship as they both try to discover their identities.
THE OTHER SON is very well written. Even though the conflict is very subtle, it keeps viewers interested and engaged with the characters. The director takes great care at delicately presenting some of the scenes that would otherwise be awkward because of the odd situation. The worldview is mixed with some Jewish and Muslim elements plus some good moral redemptive themes of loving your family.
There are some particularly interesting social statements made against the way Israelis and Palestinians approach religion and nationality. In one scene, Joseph goes to the Rabbi with the news of his switched birth to find out if he is still Jewish. Even though Joseph has done everything a good Jew is supposed to do, the Rabbi says he’s not Jewish and must go through a conversion. Yacine goes through similar struggles at home. His father and brother have disdain for Jews. When it’s revealed that Yacine is of Jewish descent biologically, they are grief stricken and ostracize him.
Eventually, however, everyone learns to love and accept their sons regardless of their lineage. However, the movie still reveals the lack of grace that the modern Jewish and Islamic cultures offer. Both cultures represent the antithesis to Christ’s adoption of all believers regardless of what nationality they are. As Paul writes in Ephesians 1:5, God has “predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will.” THE OTHER SON has some good elements, but strong caution is advised for some foul language, implied drug use and the mixed worldview.
(PaPa, B, Ab, L, VV, S, N, DD, MM) Mixed pagan worldview where Islam is presented, but Judaism receives much more air time when a Rabbi speaks with the main character and moral elements of loving your family overcome prejudice, but, ultimately, both religions are seen in a slightly negative light; seven obscenities (including one “f” word) and no profanities; violence includes some people fight and teenage boy gets stabbed; Some sexual jokes about “doing it,” and teenage boy forces a kiss on a teenage girl; upper male nudity with teenage boy in his underwear and girls are in bikinis at beach; no alcohol; mild smoking and implied drug use; and, lots of national and religious prejudice, but seen in a bad light.
THE OTHER SON is a French drama set in Israel. It’s about two different teenage boys who find out that they were accidentally switched at birth in the hospital. Joseph grew up as dedicated Jew in Israel. His father is a high-ranking officer in the air force. This makes him utterly shocked when he learns his biological parents are actually Palestinian. When Yacine finds out he is actually Jewish, his parents ostracize him. Both boys struggle under the sudden resentment from their own society and even family that they grew up loving. Ultimately, however, a friendship is born, and family love overcomes prejudice.
THE OTHER SON is very well written. Even though the conflict is very subtle, it keeps viewers interested and engaged with the characters. The director takes great care to delicately present some of the scenes that would otherwise be awkward because of the odd situation. The worldview is mixed with some Jewish and Muslim elements plus some good moral redemptive themes of loving your family. THE OTHER SON warrants strong caution for some foul language, implied drug use and mixed worldview.