A Boy Named Ami (film #9 in the Immigration and Absorption section of the State of Israel section of Stephen Spielberg Jewish Film Archive). [Category: Public Service]

This early 60s Israeli film tells the story of a troubled teenaged boy named Ami, and how the Youth Allyah organization helped him to adjust to life on a fishing kibbutz. Ami was distant and wary at first, but is finally drawn in to the life of the kibbutz when a resident identifies and cultivates the boy’s interest in archaeology. This is a touching, well-made film of the troubled-youth-is-helped variety. There’s nothing particularly striking about it, except perhaps its Israeli setting, but it leaves you with a hopeful, optimistic feeling without being unrealistic or overplaying its hand. And it has a wonderful mock-ship piece of playground equipment that I want for the Film Ephemera Museum of Quirky Devices.

Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: *. Weirdness: **. Historical Interest: ****. Overall Rating: ***.

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