Review by John Delia

Bittersweet, the film Golden Voices tells the story of a 62 year old Jewish Russian couple Victor (Vladimir Friedman) and Raya Frenkel (Maria Belkin) that relocates to Israel in the 1980’s following the dissolving of the USSR. Famous for their voice dubbing of movie films in Russian, the two find it difficult to find similar work in a country that speaks mainly Hebrew. Adding to that, Israel’s neighboring countries are still at war with them and not accepting their independent status.

Vladimir Friedman and Maria Belkin in GOLDEN VOICES. Courtesy of Music Box Films

With the rent for their one bedroom apartment above what they left behind, jobs being scarce, only speaking Russian and trouble getting acclimated with the Russian Jewish neighborhood, the two set out to find some form of income. Raya finally finds a good paying telemarketing job using her voice, but its giving phone sex so she hides the “product” she sells from Victor.

Vladimir Friedman in GOLDEN VOICES. Courtesy of Music Box Films.

So begins a comedy of errors, a drama of life as a stranger in a complicated city and a romance under pressure. Co-writer and Director Evgeny Ruman does a very good job of setting up his story before he lays out the happy couples dilemmas. Not knowing much about the life of Russian Jews when Communist Russia finally allowed their citizens to leave their country, the film was not only an enjoyable script, but for me an eye opener.

Golden Voices has not been rated by the MPAA, but it contains some language and sexual content. The film plays out in the Russian and Hebrew language with easy to read subtitles. My rating for the foreign film and romance audience is 3.5 out of 5 Stars.

Maria Belkin in GOLDEN VOICES. Courtesy of Music Box Films.

Specifications and additional video information:
Cast: Vladimir Friedman, Maria Belkin, Evelin Hagoel, Uri Klauzner, Elizabeth Kon
Directed and co-written by: Evgeny Ruman
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Romance
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Running Time: 1 hr. 28 min.
Video Release Date: February 2022
Language: Russian, Hebrew
Reviewed Format: DVD
Subtitles: English
Distributed by: Music Box Films
Released on: Digital, DVD

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