Matchmaker, Matchmaker, Bring Me A Husband

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It’s nice when a Netflix recommendation turns into a great afternoon of moviewatching. On a cold and blustery Easter on Green Lane we watched “Arranged,” a film about two women, one Muslim and one Orthodox Jew, who follow the same path to love and marriage.

They meet at the school where they both teach, run by a busybody principal who seems hell-bent on changing their centuries old traditions including using matchmakers to find love. She chides the two young women who remain surprisingly pleasant in spite of the old bat’s incredible insensitivity.

We watch a parade of characters brought in by the Jewish family’s hired matchmaker. Self-absorbed blowhards or uncomfortably shy nerds; none of them are even close to what Rochel wants. Nasira has to endure entreaties from old men with bad teeth with her whole family sitting around the dinner table, choices of her father’s that she very definitely doesn’t agree with.

The Syrian family has Nasira to marry off. But they come across much better than the Jews, when Rochel comes to their house she’s welcomed and they don’t share the horror the other family expresses when Nasira comes hajib-clad into their Brooklyn apartment. They ask her to leave ‘before your father gets home.’

But through sleuthing and serendipity, a charming, non-self-absorbed Orthodox Jewish man comes into Rochel’s life…and a handsome and well-toothed engineer becomes the love of Nasira’s life. We see the two of them, friends still, sitting in the park with their strollers at the film’s close. It’s nice to see how Muslims and Jews have plenty in common, in the movies and in real life.