Must Be Jewish
Synopsis: A romantic comedy about a young woman named Silvia Platter who wants nothing more than to date and marry a young Jewish man, but first, she needs pointers on how to be truly Jewish from her friend Charlotte Weber. The only trouble is, will Jonah still love Silvia even after he realizes she is as goyim as they come ?
Silvia Marie Platter:
Aria Platter: (Silvia's mom)
Dan Platter: (Silvia's mom)
Moshe Kessler: (Jonah's granddad)
Jonah Eli Kessler: (Jew of Silvia's dreams)
Lydia Ruth Kessler: (Jonah's mom)
Caleb Kessler: (Jonah's dad)
Charlotte Weber: (Silvia's best friend)
Rachael Weber: (Charlotte's mom)
John Weber: (Charlotte's dad)
Korah Weber: (Charlotte's little sister)
Scene 1-Girl Talk
Silvia: (online on her computer beginning to sign up for J-Date again) Here it goes, another chance to step up to the plate. Will I strike out, or hit a home run ?
Firstly, I have to choose a name that doesn't sound, well...so Shiskah.
Charlotte: (online) Sil, is that you ? Are you thinking of signing into J-Date again ?
Silvia: How is it that you even know that, Charlie ? Are you psychic ?
Charlotte: When it comes to you, Silvia, I might as well be.
Silvia: Charlotte, you and I both know I haven't had a date in years. I'm starting to feel desperate.
Charlotte: You just need proper guidance to impress a Jewish guy, honey. It's not that you're doing it all wrong. You're just going about it in the wrong way.
Silvia: I'm much too goyim. I know, I know.
Charlotte: Nothing a little Charlie magic can't fix.
Silvia: When you say it though it sounds devious and highly illegal.
Charlotte: Don't worry, it's not. I'll help you bag the Jew of your dreams in no time. I know you had your heart set on a fellow at work. What was his name again ?
Silvia: Jonah Kessler. Honey, he is fiiiiiiiiiiine. He has everything going for him. Mmm-mmm-mmm ! I can't understand why a gentleman like that doesn't have a wife already.
Charlotte: Maybe you're a possibility ?
Silvia: I can only hope that I am.
Charlotte: Listen, I'll help you. I'm giving you a major make-over. You'll learn everything you need to know the charm the socks off of him and impress him. He may like you so much he might introduce you to his parents. Once that is out of the way, it's smooth sailing on out.
Silvia: Sounds promising. When should we meet ?
Charlotte: As soon as possible, girlfriend. There isn't any time to waste. If I know anything about Jewish mothers, they can be real pains in the tuchus when it comes to getting their boys to settle down with 'nice girls'. So, we need to act and act fast. Enough chatting. I'm zipping over there STAT.
Silvia: See you soon, Charlie.
(Signs offline and shuts off her computer)
(Fairly soon, she hears honking and Charlotte waving at her to join her in her joyride. 'Girls Just Wanna Have Fun' plays as Charlotte makes Silvia over and teaches her everything a Shiska has to know about how to be Jewish.)
Charlotte: I've given you the tools you need, girly. All you have to do is use them. Do you have Jonah's number ?
Silvia: Yes. I talk to him every day, but I have never had the guts to ask him out.
Charlotte: Don't just stand there, then...Give the boy a call. If I wasn't the girlfriend I am to you, I'd be grabbin' Jonah for myself.
Silvia: You wouldn't !
Charlotte: Actually. No. I kid. (chuckling) I just wanted to see what your reactino would be.
Silvia: You little wench. (mock punches her) Just wish me luck.
Charlotte: (a la Rob Schnieder) You can do it ! Go for it ! (pats her on the back)
Silvia: Thanks, Charlie. You are a lifesaver. I'll give you all the deets later, okay ?
Charlotte: You better, chica. (kisses her cheek) Muchas mazels, mi amiga !
(quick scene shift)
Scene 2-Making An Impression
(as Jonah and Silvia go out on their first date, 'Happy' by Pharrel and they're having the time of their life at the roller rink, rock climbing on fake rock climbing walls and even zip lining. At the end, Jonah and Silvia find out they have quite a bit in common, but things start spiraling out of control.)
Jonah: I never thought you would go along with ziplining. I hadn't done it before myself, but I had never thought of doing so alone. Doing it with you was way more fun.
Silvia: I'll say. That was exhillerating. (spits some hair out of her mouth)
Jonah: (laughing) Here, let me help you with that. (very gently puts her hair behind her ear) You don't know it but you are one sexy lady.
Silvia: (looks bashfully at her shoes momentarily)
Jonah: (brings her lips up to his and kisses her deeply)
(All of a sudden, the screen becomes very multicolored and 'Believe Or Not I'm Walking On Air' plays until Jonah makes an announcement.)
Jonah: I want you to meet my parents ! I've told them everything about you.
Silvia: (suddenly her dreamy-eyed look 'breaks' the enchantment we've been seeing through her eyes) Wait. WHAT ?
Jonah: You heard me, Silvia.
Silvia: It's our first date, Jonah. Don't you think you're being a bit rash ?
Jonah: No, not at all. If they approve of you, you'll be a shoe in ! Have you told your parents about me yet ?
Silvia: Sure, but they want to let us have some time together before they meet you.
Jonah: You're parents sound so laid back. Not with my messhugenah mom. Oh man. All I ever hear is 'Jonah, when are you gonna marry a nice Jewish gal and make me some grandbabies ? I ain't gonna live forever you know !'
Silvia: (has a mental image of Jonah's mom) She sounds...erm, charming.
Jonah: Don't worry, ma and pa are gonna love you.
Silvia: (thinking) I'm not so sure about that. Once they figure out that I'm just your ordinary interdenominational chick, they'll go batcrap crazy. Somehow I get the feeling that this is gonna be one lonnnnnnnng week.
Scene 3-Phone Call Confessional
Charlotte: (on the phone) So, how did your first date go ?
Silvia: Firstly, Jonah is a stellar smoocher.
Charlotte: Our people are known for that...good on ya ! But...you're hesitating.
Girly. Out with it. NOW !
Silvia: (chortling) Ok, OKAY ! Fine. (exhales sharply) He wants me to meet his parents.
Charlotte: After the first date ? Ohhhh, man ! This is really going well for you.
Silvia: That's exactly what scares me, Charlie. Sooner or later they're going to find out just how goyim I am. I have been lying this whole time. They think I go to temple !
Charlotte: You wouldn't have even gotten this far had it not been for me.
Korah: (yawning) Could you keep it down, Charlie ? I'm trying to get my beauty sleep.
Charlotte: Korah...shhh, the adults are talking here.
Korah: Big whoop-dee-doo. So freakin' what ? You got your friend into a heap of trouble.
Charlotte: Who's side are you on, you little turncoat ?! (mock punches her)
Silvia: (feigningly) Ow !
Korah: Charlie, you have to get her out of this mess.
Charlotte: Don't you think I know ? It's actually Silvia that'll have to tell them the truth tomorrow.
Silvia: That's just it, Charles. I know I will, but what if I'm rejected. I'll be back at square one. At home plate, swinging my bat, waiting for the first pitch to come in.
Korah: Is she using sports metaphors again ?
Korah: Do what's in your heart.
Charlotte: I know I may have been a bit zealous in telling you to gloss over some details of your life. (nervous laughter) Look, whatever happens, you know that we're here for you and love you.
Silvia: I know, Charlie. You're the best friend and surrogate sister a gal could ever ask for. You too, Korah.
Silvia: Just wish me luck tomorrow, I'm meeting his parents for the first time.
Hopefully I'll sleep well. I'm drinking cammomile tea just as a precaution...(yawn)
Together: Mazel tov.
Korah: (mutter) Gonna need it.
Sil: Wha ?
Korah: Nothing, dearie. Just get some sleep.
Charl: And keep us in the loop, holmes !
Sil: Will do, girly q.
Scene 4-Meet the (somewhat Nutty) Parents
(We see Silvia enjoying a very plesant dream with Jonah while Coldplay's 'Magic' plays in the background until she wakes up.)
Silvia: (looking at the clock) (groans, mock weeping) Today is the day. Doomsday. (deep breath) (a new, upbeat version of 'I've Got the Power' plays in the background as she starts to gussy up and walk to Jonah's house with confidence)
Lydia: There she is, our Jonah's little beau ! Isn't she just darling ? (pinching her cheeks and patting her head and then hugging her, quite vigorously)
Caleb: She is quite the dish, Jonah. You weren't kiddin when you said she was a knockout, wowza.
Moshe: Let me see the girl for myself... (they all move in to hug her)
Jonah: Guys. GUYS ! Would ya back off ? Let the poor lady have some air.
Lydia: Sorry, Jonah. We were all so excited about meeting her, we couldn't help ourselves.
Moshe: Make yourself at home, Silvia. Nos casa es tu casa.
Silvia: (coming inside and having her hand shaken by the family)
Caleb: Don't mind us. We may be a little nutty, but we all mean well.
Silvia: What is that sumptous aroma coming from the kitchen ?
Moshe: Oh, that's Lydia's famous brisket. Gonna put some meat on those bones.
(As they all sit down to eat, they start talking and then Silvia gathers the courage to tell them the truth)
Silvia: I really do love your son. In fact, I love him more than anyone I have ever met, and someday, I do wish to become his wife.
Lydia: Oh, cookie ! That makes us all elated...
Caleb: (reaches over to pat his wife's hand) Wait, let her finish, honey.
Silvia: (inhales deeply and exhales deliberately)
Jonah: (looking at her supportively, taking her hand into his and squeezing it tenderly)
Silvia: I've been lying to you the whole time about being Jewish. I don't go to temple, I don't celebrate seder, I don't eat unleavened bread on high holy days. I don't even celebrate Sabbath. In fact, I'm just your average interdenominational Protestant girl.
Moshe: You think we didn't know that from the beginning ? Silvia, please. You were trying to hard, my dear !
Jonah: I knew it from the beginning but it doesn't change how I feel about you.
What matters is you had the wherewithall to ask me out and I find confidence in women very sexy. (kisses her cheek)
Lydia: I don't see why you were so worked up, darling !
Silvia: (twitching slightly) (laughs maniacally for a moment)
Jonah: Are you alright, my dear ?
Silvia: (leaning over and kissing him, quite passionately) Answer your question, my hotness ?
Jonah: (slightly drunken tone) You could say that.
Moshe: So...When are you two getting married then ?
Jonah: Gramps ! Please don't pressure me. We'll get married when we get married. We have to get to know each other first.
Moshe: Ah, thank the Almighty. Maybe I can see grandchildren before I die of old age.
Lydia/Caleb: Grandpa ! Dad !
Moshe: What ?
(They laugh for a moment and all start chatting and laughing even heartier than before.)
('I'm Gonna Make This Place Your Home' plays in the background as the scene begins to fade...)
Scene 5-Growing Fonder
(Meld into next scene that plays out more like a clipshow...'Months pass...And A Year Finally Comes to Pass...)
Silvia: (yawning and waking up, calling her mother)
Aria: Good morning, little one. Why are you calling me so early ?
Silvia: I have a good feeling about today.
Aria: Why's that ?
Silvia: Well, I think I am going to get that promotion I was telling you about.
Aria: See, what did your father and I tell you ? Just keep on pushing forward, giving it your best and the rest will follow.
Dan: Actually, I always said, 'The squeaky wheel gets the grease'.
(Aria and Dan chortle in the background.)
Aria: Either philosophy works in the work-a-day world, dearheart.
Silvia: Also, something else interesting is happening.
Dan: (in the background) Tell us all about it. We're all ears !
Aria: Sounds exciting !
Silvia: It is. You know that I have been dating Jonah for over a year now and our love is like a firebrand. No matter where I go, what I do, my first thought is of him. (singing)
Aria: Here she goes again.
Dan: Oh, boy.
Silvia: (singing merrily) When I see him, my heart goes pitter patter. A lump forms in my heart. Heavens, what's the matter ? Strange as though it seems, I've found the Jew of my dreams. People ask me why ? I say why not ! He's smart, not shy and lava hot. I'd love to give him everything I've got. But will he give this goyim girl a shot ? Don't tell me I'm delusional, I just want to be a part of this everyday world. And understand his heart. A man like that has looks and brains to boot. Not to mention, greay googily woo-He's cute ! With a little tweak here and there. Gonna bag my man with a little flair. Now all I have to do is prepare, and be thankful for clean underware.
Aria: Was that really necessary ?
Silvia: Yes. Yes, it was. Anyways, Jonah is taking me to the park for a picnic. Isn't that stellar ?
Dan: It surely is, honey ! Have a good time.
Silvia: I will. Love you both !
(Scene shift. We see Jonah and Silvia in the park savoring a picnic he made for the both of them together, laughing and enjoying each other's company. An instrumental version of 'Crazin' in the Grass' plays in the background.)
Jonah: I heard about your promotion, Sil ! That's great. (hugs her and then kisses her)
Silvia: You were part of my motivation, Jonah.
Jonah: Really ?
Silvia: Of course you were. You know I love you.
Jonah: That's fantastic, because I have been meaning to ask you something for a while.
Silvia: What's that ?
Jonah: (starts fiddling in his pocket for a black velvet box, and kneels down to present it to her once he has located it) Would you do me the honor of becoming my wife ?
Silvia: (building upon hysteria) Yes, yes...A thousand times...YES ! (picks up the ring, puts it on her finger, picks Jonah off the ground, spins him around, kisses him endlessly)
Scene 6-What A Feeling
Charlotte: You did it, girl ! You finally did it !
Silvia: Yes, I did. And, honestly, you were right all along. If someone really loves you, they'll love you for who you are.
Charlotte: (weepily) I couldn't be more euphoric for you !
Korah: I usually don't get overklempt with sappy stuff like this but, dang it...
(They hug her, all weeping happily)
(Jonah and Silvia dance to 'What a Feeling' and then sing 'You're The One That I Want' together.)
Moshe: You gotta admit, those two make beautiful music together.
Caleb: You could say they're harmonious.
Moshe: Oh, come on, son...that was one lame joke you told.
Caleb: I inherited my puns from you, dad.
Moshe: Oh, I'm so wounded...look at me bleed.
Aria: Don't fight you two. Just enjoy yourself, kick back, and kick up your heels !
Korah: WOO HOO !
(Close up carosel shot of the happy couple dancing to 'I Gotta Feelin', which segues into 'The Best Day of My Life' when it ends.)
Silvia: (narrating) It was far better than anything I had even imagined growing up as a young girl. I never thought I would actually get this far, but now my dream was becoming reality. Whatever came before us, Jonah and I were going to face it together. Nothing else mattered but the present moment and the euphoria we felt in these milliseconds surrounding us. Life indeed, was an adventure, and we were going to enjoy the dance.
(Upward POV of the dancing couple and others on the dance floor having the time of their lives until they whirl into shades and variations of colors and patterns. The words 'The End' play out on the screen and the Hora is played during the credits. For those who stick for the many credits, 'You Won't Succeed On Broadway (If You Don't Have Any Jews)' play while bloopers are shown.)
April 19, 2014
Dedicated to Barbara J. Berndt Born November 26, 1934 Died April 19, 2008