LGBT Info

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The Cakemaker (Hebrew: האופה מברלין‎, romanized: haOfeh miBerlin) is a 2017 Israeli-German drama film directed by Ofir Raul Grazier. It stars Sarah Adler, Tim Kalkhof, Zohar Strauss and Roy Miller.

It premiered at the 52nd Karlovy Vary International Film Festival. It was part of the Official Selection - Competition and won the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury. It received the 2018 Ophir Award for best picture, and was selected as the Israeli entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 91st Academy Awards, but it was not nominated.

Storyline

Thomas, a young, solitary German baker, is having an affair with a married Israeli man named Oren, who frequently visits Berlin on business. When Oren fails to return Thomas's calls one day, Thomas discovers that he died in an accident in Israel, and he goes to Jerusalem and visits the cafe of Oren's widow, Anat. Without revealing his identity, he gets a job in the cafe's kitchen and rents an apartment in the city. Though at first he is not allowed to make food, as it puts the cafe at risk of losing its kosher certification, Anat eventually tries some baked goods that Thomas made for her son's birthday and allows him to make food.

Thomas learns more about Anat's life and her family, including her brother-in-law, Motti, who is initially suspicious of him. He also grows closer to Anat, who is still grieving her husband's death despite her awareness of his infidelity. Anat is continuously tempted to look through Oren's personal effects, which include notes from his lover and a second phone. Eventually, while preparing a large volume of baked goods for a catering order, Anat makes an advance on Thomas, who hesitantly reciprocates; the two have a short affair, which begins to lift Anat's spirits. The affair makes Thomas ruminate on his time with Oren, including one of their final trysts, where Oren dismissed the idea of revealing the affair to his wife.

Anat finds a shopping list written in German among Oren's personal effects, including the name of the Berlin cafe where Thomas works. Anat tells Thomas that Oren told her he was having an affair, and planned on leaving her and their son in Jerusalem to start a new life in Berlin. Anat forced him to leave the house, and he died in a car accident on his way to a hotel. Both Anat and Thomas are separately overwhelmed with guilt and grief. Later, Anat discovers that her kosher certification has been revoked, making all the catered goods worthless. While trying to deal with the situation, she discovers a note in Oren's effects with Thomas's handwriting. After rebooting Oren's second phone, she discovers more than a dozen voicemail messages from Thomas, and realizes that he was her husband's lover. Motti forces Thomas to leave Jerusalem immediately, saying they don't want him here and he must never return to Israel.

Three months later, Anat's cafe is successful, despite lacking kosher certification. Anat travels to Berlin, where she spots Thomas coming out of his cafe from a distance. After watching him depart, she looks up at the sky and smiles.