A mirror, a toothache, fish cooked with lemon: for Aviva (Asi Levi), these are the small bits of reality that spark the imagination, compelling her to write thoughtful, magical stories that she hopes one day to publish. But Aviva struggles to keep her family together: strong and sexy (a more svelte, Mizrahi version of an Anna Magnani character), she supports her unemployed husband by working as a cook in a hotel kitchen while raising her two teenage children, caring for her obstinate, unpredictable mother, counseling her spirited sister through a troubled marriage, and keeping the peace between them all. A pathway out of her provincial life appears when she meets a well-known author who believes her writing has promise and agrees to help edit her work. As Aviva begins to suspect that the author’s intentions are less than noble, she is forced to make crucial decisions that pit her family’s interests against her own dreams.
Written and directed by Shemi Zarhin (Bonjour Monsieur Shlomi), Aviva My Love is richly shot, with glimpses into the title character’s inner fantasy life, telling the story of a woman attempting to make her unique voice heard while over and over it is muffled by the needs and desires of those around her. Winner of six Awards of the Israeli Film Academy, including Best Picture, Best Actress, and Best Director.