Dough full movie review - Light-hearted foodie-comedy that preaches tolerance (for religion AND marijuana)
"Dough" (2015 release from the UK; 94 min.) brings the story of an elderly Jewish baker, Nat Dayan. As the movie opens, Dayan is awakened at 4 am by his clock alarm, and off he goes to his beloved "Dayan & Son" bakery for another long day.
Much to his dismay, his assistant unexpectedly gives his notice, and Dayan puts up an "Apprentice Wanted" sign. In a parallel story, we get to know Ayyash, a teenage Muslin boy who recently emigrated to England with his mum from somewhere in Africa. Ayyash is in a bit of trouble due to selling marijuana on the side. His mum pushes Ayyash to apply for the vacant apprenticeship. At this point we're not even 15 min. into the movie, but to tell you more would spoil your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.
Couple of comments: this movie is directed by John Goldschmidt, a veteran of mostly British TV work. Here he tackles a light-hearted story about how fate brings together an old Jew and a teenage Muslim, and how wonderful religious tolerance and mutual respect can be, all the while also suggesting that the occasional doughnut or muffin spiked with marijuana may not be such a bad thing either. There is nothing much surprising in the entire movie, but it's all done in a rather pleasant and inoffensive, if at time borderline preachy, way. Jonathan Pryce as the old Jewish Baker brings a fine performance. The boy playing Ayyash has an easy smile on his face, and the chemistry between these two lead characters is obvious. Interesting is that before the movie started, there was a 30 second "introduction" clip by Pauline Collins, who plays the owner of the shop space, to remind us how important religious tolerance is and to enjoy the movie. That was a little weird, I must say.
"Dough" opened without any pre-release fanfare or buzz at my local art-house theater here in Cincinnati a number of weeks ago. I wasn't really planning on seeing it, but since it's now been running for so long, I figured I wanted to see for myself why this movie must be doing so well that it's still running after all these weeks. The Sunday early evening screening where I saw this at was attended very nicely, somewhat to my surprise. The crowd absolutely loved the movie, laughing and chuckling at all the right moments. If they keep packing'em in like this, I imagine "Dough" will stay in the theater for a while longer. If you are in the mood for a light-hearted foodie-comedy about a Jewish bakery with marijuana-spiked wares, I might suggest you check this out, be it in the theater, on VOD or eventually on DVD/Blu-ray.