Zucker and Zuckermann

Only a desperate and depraved man would fake a heart attack to get out of his mother’s funeral. Jaeckie Zucker is a bit of both. As the harried protagonist in the hilarious German film Go for Zucker!, the professional gambler/pool shark is facing a mountain of debt and heavy consequences if it’s not paid in time. But just as Zucker learns of a big-money pool tournament that could clear his debt, a telegram informs him that his mother has died.

And it gets worse. Zucker’s brother, Samuel, who calls himself Zuckermann, is an orthodox Jew (like their mother). He views Zucker as a godless communist for staying in Berlin. But that’s OK; Zucker thinks Samuel’s a superstitious nut. The problem is, mom’s will stipulates that the two must reconcile within seven days of her death or their inheritance goes bye-bye. For Zucker, that means playing host to Samuel’s family, having to sit shiva (the Jewish mourning ritual), and, of course, finding a way to the pool tournament without blowing his cover.

Go for Zucker! is showing now through Sunday at Cinema Paradiso (503 SE Sixth St, Fort Lauderdale, 954-760-9898) and Thursday through Saturday at Palm Beach Community College's Duncan Theatre (4200 S. Congress Ave., Lake Worth, 561-868-3948). In addition, Cinema Paradiso is hosting a wine and cheese reception at 7 p.m. Friday, in conjunction with Whole Foods Market. Bring a Whole Foods receipt to that night’s 6 and 8 p.m. screenings, and it’s only five bucks. Visit www.cinemaparadiso.org.
Feb. 1-5