Barry Rubin Says Of, ‘Norman-The Moderate Rise and Tragic Fall of a New York Fixer, “Try It, You’ll Like It”

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“Norman-The Moderate Rise and Tragic Fall of a New York Fixer” stars Richard Gere who plays the title role in this film from Israeli born writer and director Joseph Cedar. The “spoiler” title tells a lot of what this movie is about but it is indeed much more. Reaching beyond his traditional roles, Mr. Gere, in exemplary fashion, portrays the part of Norman Oppenheimer, a self-styled consultant/businessman who knows someone who knows someone else who knows another who can get you the contacts or deals you are seeking.
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The film takes us into the inner workings of smart east coast investors to the chambers and offices of the Israeli Knesset, its cabinet and its Prime Minister, and how Norman, by conniving and sheer “chutzpah”, interacts with them all. For those familiar with Yiddish parlance, he would be commonly referred to as a “macher”, or in English, an influential guy with great connections. The interesting point in the casting is that the actors portraying the Israeli members of the cast are, in fact, Israeli, but the other Jewish roles, including Norman, are played by non-Jewish performers such as Michael Sheen, as Norman’s nephew, and Steve Buscemi, as Norman’s rabbi. Make no mistake, this film is more universal in its appeal than the Semitic nature of its script would imply for it deals with drama, political intrigue, thrills and a story that will keep the viewer interested, on edge and appreciative of a well performed and well written motion picture. norman-the-moderate-rise-and-tragic-fall-of-a-new-york-fixer-20164443
I give the film 3 and ½ stars and, as Norman himself might say, “try it, you’ll like it.”

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Written By: Barry Rubin, Sr. Film Reviewer and Hollywood Historian
Photographs are Courtesy: IMDB
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