Food has always represented more than sustenance in Jewish culture, and its transformative power is on display in this delightful British dramedy which unites a widowed third generation kosher baker, Nat (a crusty yet compassionate Jonathan Pryce), and his new Muslim apprentice, Ayyash (Jerome Holder in a breakout performance). Dayan & Son Bakery is in a downward spiral. Nat’s customers are all moving or dying. To top it off, his adversarial competitor is moving in on his turf, and his son has no interest in carrying on the family business. When Nat’s apprentice quits, he reluctantly hires Ayyash, a smalltime pot dealer living with his mother, who has struggled to keep a crumbling roof over their heads since they immigrated to England from Darfur. Working the dough at the sleepy bakery, Nat and Ayyash begin to understand each other’s personal histories and religious rituals; distrust becomes respect and eventually a heartwarming intergenerational friendship. But Dough really takes off when Ayyash’s two professions accidentally merge in a batch of very popular cannabis-infused challah. Then things begin to look up for both men. Led by the always impressive Pryce, Dough is reminiscent of the popular British comedy Saving Grace and perfect for film lovers of any age, race, religion or gender with an appetite for feel-good cinema. —Alexis Whitman
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