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May 30, 2011 12:30 pm

“Young Avraham”- A New Link in the Chain of Biblical Documentation

avatar by Rachel Soussan

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Last week the full length animated motion picture “Young Avraham” was released on DVD.

With society’s insatiable appetite for entertainment, and hundreds of movies streaming out of Hollywood each year, what sets this film apart is it’s unique approach to factual documentation of the biblical story of Abraham, the founding father of monotheistic religions.

Screenshot from Young Avraham

The film follows the life of Abraham and his struggles as a child in his rebellion against the prevalent polytheistic beliefs of his time. Together creators Yisroel Bernath and Zvi Hershcovich researched various sources of the Midrash, to give an accurate portrayal of Abraham’s faith development and his ultimate break from the idol-worshipping society that he was raised in.

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In addition to being an educational medium, the film is of high quality computer animation, created by Bing Bang Digital Studios, and provides entertainment through comic relief and a structured scaffold of plot development.

Biblical documentation has developed over the centuries, beginning with the written text of the Torah as well as the oral Torah. With increasing dispersion of Jews all over the world, the oral Torah was eventually textually recorded in order to preserve tradition. Throughout the 1200’s of the Common Era, supplementary works were added for elucidation and understanding of the original texts. “I see this movie as another link in the chain of biblical documentation, ” says Bernath. “We have to move with the times and utilize the most effective types of media which are made available to us today in order to make our history and philosophy accessible.”

Of all of the stories in the Bible, the life of Abraham was chosen because it is an intrinsic part of the heritage of all nations. While the film was produced by Jewish organization, Bible Kids Club,  it is a movie that has the ability to bring both children and adults alike closer to the source of their faith. The project is inspired by the idea that “In order to know where one is going, one must know where he has come from.”

In addition, the film is refreshingly appropriate, with the characters using refined language and wearing modest clothing while remaining true to the context of the Midrash.

The movie has already been met with a positive response and is looking to fill a niche in the movie industry with similar projects being launched in the future.

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  • Yishmael Abrahamson

    How is Midrash factual documentation? Even you Lubavitchers know that not all midrash is factual in the classical sense as there are differences of opinion about what happened. They may be both TRUE in a spirtual sense but this is what happened?????
    By the way My kids Lovvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvve the film. it is the best produced jewish animation film ever!!

    • Yitzchak

      In response to your question

      When the subject of a particular Midrash is an idea it is possible that the details of the event never took place. this is because the story is only a mushel.

      When however the subject of an oral teaching is to explain in detail events of Avraham’s life, it would be incorrect to claim that the details are just a mushel.

      It is true that there are different apinions as to what exactly took place, these differences are only is some of the details, the general story one garthers from all of the different Midrashim proves beyond a doubt the main parts to the untold story of Avraham.

  • Chaya

    Wow! This is so amazing. I had seen it online, but thought it was another Bible Cartoon. I can’t believe this was created by rabbis. It is so professional. Thank you for bringing this story to light. You made reference to more films on the way. I can’t wait!

  • Josh

    Thanks for this great article. It looks fantastic. This film has raised the bar of the Jewish Film Industry. I can’t wait to watch it. Just found it for $18 on http://www.youngavrahamfilm.com seems like the cheapest price online.

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