PROGRESS ON THE MYSTERY? JeruZalem Movie Review
(Karin Crighton, horrortalk.com)
Sarah's brother has been dead for a year but she can't move on. So Rachel (Danielle Jadelyn) plans a trip to Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, a whirlwind adventure to help get Sarah (Yael Grobglas) out of her rut. On the plane they meet Kevin (Yon Tumarkin), who convinces them to go to Jerusalem first to be there for Yom Kippur. Unfortunately, on this most holy night of the year, a gate has opened under the city. A gate to hell.
Using a verse from Jeremiah 19 in the Talmud, "R. Jeremiah ben Elazar said again, 'Hell has three gates: One in the desert, one in the sea, and one in Jerusalem' as it is written [Numbers xvi. 33]" (found here), The Paz Brothers create a tale of Judgement Day arriving with a vengeance. No atonement is enough and dark spirits arise to walk the streets of Jerusalem and prey on those living in and visiting the city – including Rachel and Sarah.
SPOILERS follow in the review, so don't click on the link and read further if that matters to you.
The mystery in question is which passage in the Book of Jeremiah is supposed to be the inspiration for the three gates to hell in JeruZalem
. This review specifies that the mystery passage is "a verse from Jeremiah 19 in the Talmud," which is not very helpful inasmuch as the Book of Jeremiah is in the Bible, not the Talmud. The Talmudic passage linked to is in Eruvin
19a and reads as follows:
R. Jeremiah ben Elazar said again. "Hell has three gates: One in the desert, one in the sea, and one in Jerusalem." "In the desert," as it is written [Numbers xvi. 33]: "And they went down, they, and all they that appertained to them, alive into the pit (Sheol-Gehenna)." "In the sea," as it is written [Jonah ii. 3]: "Out of the depth of the grave have I cried, and thou hast heard my voice." "And one in Jerusalem," as it is written [Isaiah xxxi. 9]: "Who hath a fire in Zion, and a furnace in Jerusalem." And the disciples of R. Ishmael taught, that by a fire in Zion is meant Gehenna, and by the furnace in Jerusalem is meant the gate of Gehenna.
Here we have quotations from Numbers, Jonah and Isaiah, but not from Jeremiah. Moreover, the logion is by a Rabbi Jeremiah and it appears on p. 19a of Tractate Eruvin
. Have the Jeremiah and the 19 been transmogrified into chapter 19 of the Book of Jeremiah? It's tempting to conclude that. The problem, though, is that Jeremiah 19 deals at length with the Tophet (the site for ritual human sacrifice) in the valley of Hinnom near Jerusalem. The term "gehenna" is the Hebrew phrase "valley of Hinnom," known as a term for hell in the New Testament and (as "Gehinnom") in the Rabbinic literature, including in the cited passage above. So it looks like Jeremiah 19 may well be an inspiration for the movie, but the specific verse and its specific exegesis still remain a mystery.