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The Vigil

Director :

Keith Thomas

Release :

26 Feb 2021
In the Hasidic community of Boro Park, Brooklyn, a despondent young man, short on both faith and funds, reluctantly agrees to assume the responsibility of an overnight shimmer and fulfill the Jewish practice of watching over the body of a deceased member of the Orthodox community. With only the company of the recently departed and an ailing widow who expresses cryptic reservations as to the man's ability to carry out the task, he soon finds himself exposed to a terrifying haunting within the claustrophobic confines of a home that has become host to a malevolent entity. In what is essentially a one-man show, Dave Davis is profoundly affecting in his portrayal of the hesitant sentinel, exuding an empathetic combination of frayed nerves and timid weariness. Throughout this uncanny night, his vigil gradually transforms into a harrowing spiritual investigation of both his cursed surroundings and his pitiable past - a journey in which the very recesses of his community's collective trauma ... Written by Toronto International Film Festival A man providing overnight watch to a deceased member of his former Orthodox Jewish community finds himself opposite a malevolent entity, in writer-director Keith Thomas' electrifying feature debut.


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  • Summary & Details

    A man providing overnight watch to a deceased member of his former Orthodox Jewish community finds himself opposite a malevolent entity, in writer-director Keith Thomas' electrifying feature debut. In the Hasidic community of Boro Park, Brooklyn, a despondent young man, short on both faith and funds, reluctantly agrees to assume the responsibility of an overnight shimmer and fulfill the Jewish practice of watching over the body of a deceased member of the Orthodox community. With only the company of the recently departed and an ailing widow who expresses cryptic reservations as to the man's ability to carry out the task, he soon finds himself exposed to a terrifying haunting within the claustrophobic confines of a home that has become host to a malevolent entity. In what is essentially a one-man show, Dave Davis is profoundly affecting in his portrayal of the hesitant sentinel, exuding an empathetic combination of frayed nerves and timid weariness. Throughout this uncanny night, his vigil gradually transforms into a harrowing spiritual investigation of both his cursed surroundings and his pitiable past - a journey in which the very recesses of his community's collective trauma ... Written by Toronto International Film Festival

    Tagline:

    Rooted in Jewish culture and mysticism, The Vigil is a supernatural horror film set in a unique world: The Hasidic community of "Boro" Park, Brooklyn.

    Trivia:

    Not explained in detail, in Jewish religion the vigil along one night of a corpse is named shemira (Hebrew word for "watching" or "guarding"), where a guardian (called shomer for males, shomeret for females and shomrim in plural indistinctly) passes the night with the recent deceased. The purpose of this vigil is custody to this recently deceased in his/her house until the sunrise for the arrival of the funeral service previous to the burial, standing in the same room with the corpse all the time. Mentioned in the prologue, usually a guardian is a familiar or close friend with the deceased, although it's possible to hire a guardian if there isn't a friend or relative to make the vigil or anyone is available for it. Another attribute of the guardian is for reading the Torah (Holy Bible for Jews), to prevent that a demon or evil being take possession of the deceased, as well as for avoiding that the shomer/shomeret be possessed by it.

    Also Known As:

    The Vigil - Die Totenwache (Germany) The Vigil - Non ti lascerà andare (Italy) ザ・ヴィジル〜夜伽〜 (Japan, Japanese title) Диббук (Russia) Ölü Nöbeti (Turkey, Turkish title)

    Release Date:

    26 Feb 2021

    Writers:

    Keith Thomas

    Award:

    Showing all 0 wins and 1 nomination

    Filming Locations:

    Brooklyn, New York City, New York, USA

    Rating:

    PG-13

    Runtime:

    89 min

    Production Co:

    BoulderLight Pictures, Angry Adam Productions

    Photos

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