A secret history lies at the heart of Yossi Aviram’s exquisitely filmed and richly rewarding mystery about two disparate men whose lives become inextricably linked.
Middle-aged Hanoch (Lior Ashkenazi, Footnote) is a laconic bicycle repairman in a small Israeli desert town, seemingly more committed to playing chess with his buddy than he is to his pregnant girlfriend. Meanwhile in Paris, missing-persons detective Rueven − portrayed by the phenomenal Niels Arestrup − experiences a setback after tracking down disappeared famous author Moreau (The Blue Room’s Mathieu Amalric).
Rueven prepares for his retirement and searches for a new apartment with his longtime life partner Paolo (Guy Marchand), but when Hanoch is discovered on a beach in southern France, mute, without ID, holding only an article about Moreau, questions arise, and Rueven reluctantly accepts the call to investigate…
Aviram’s sensitive direction guides his intriguing protagonists, each wonderfully played by the stellar cast. With its profound meditation on the passing of time, reckoning with the past, and basking in simple pleasures, The Dune is a deeply wise and satisfying debut by a very promising filmmaker.