The Burial Society (2003)


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Directed by Nicholas Racz, The Burial Society revolves around the life of Sheldon Kasner, whose existence, as of late, has turned to one of quiet desperation. His workload is increasing as his compensation for it continues to dwindle, and Sheldon understandably falls into a deep depression. Despite being a highly unlikely candidate for organized crime, he is drawn into a complicit money-laundering scam that doesn't run as smoothly as planned. With a two-million-dollar debt on his hands, Sheldon concocts a sophisticated scheme: staging his own death with the help of the Chevrah Kadisha, or the "Burial Society," an anonymous, mysterious group of devout Jewish men who have dedicated themselves to preparing bodies for their final resting place. Unbeknownst to Sheldon, the Burial Society sees the inept businessman as the only hope for the survival of their tradition. As they indoctrinate him into their eccentric, ritualistic world, Sheldon believes his life is slowly getting back on track; however, the men of the Burial Society may have something else in mind for him.

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Rob LaBelle
as Sheldon Kasner
Jan Rubes
as Marvin Telekunsky
Allan Rich
as Hy Leibowicz
Bill Meilen
as Harry Epstein
David Paymer
as Morry Zimmer
Seymour Cassel
as Sam Goldberg
Linden Banks
as Rabbi Fernstein
Jeff Seymour
as Jake Lightman
Bill Mondy
as Stuart Lightman
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Critic Reviews for The Burial Society

All Critics (16) | Top Critics (6)

Falls prey to a creeping structural rigor mortis that sets in early.

Jul 30, 2004

Features fine performances by a cast of veteran actors but is marred by its unconvincing back story.

Jul 29, 2004 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

Underneath its cheeky amorality, there beats a heart.

Jul 28, 2004

Scrambling to find a place in the Coen brothers' shadow, Racz tries too hard to manufacture a sense of zany unpredictability, but each new twist only reveals Sheldon as the soulless opportunist that he is.

May 28, 2004 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

With a plot that is at once needlessly complicated and maddeningly careless, the movie veers unsteadily between farce and crime drama and never really engages the viewer.

Jul 8, 2003 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

The Burial Society is definitely big on plot, but can the thing dance? Short answer: It's no Astaire.

Jun 6, 2003 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

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