Elisa Mala

Dec 11, 2020

3 min read

FREI HARD: A CHANUKAH MOVIE

If Assaf “Frei” Freiberg never sees a hostage situation again, it won’t be soon enough. Two decades of being one of Mossad’s elite have taught him every conceivable use for a machine gun, but absolutely nothing about managing his ailing marriage. He hangs up his explosive hat, hoping to give the private sector — and normal life — a try.

On his final night as an agent, Frei accepts a party invitation from an old friend from his days as an Israeli exchange student in America. That old friend? Doug Emhoff, now Kamala Harris’s husband and the first second man in American history. The party? The White House Hanukkah Reception. Life has taken them in unexpected directions, but some things remain the same: Arriving at the White House, Assaf discovers that Doug, that prankster, has registered him in the security log as “Ass Frei.”

“Look who made it! Freedom Frei!” greets Doug, who can’t help but note, “the invitation said black tie.” “These are the jeans I wore at my wedding,” Assaf retorts to his dear friend. “And still, I married him,” a female voice chimes in. It’s Ashira, Assaf’s glowing wife, already the life of the party, even while turning away alcohol: her dress hides the faintest of baby bumps. Realizing the only way she could have been invited, Assaf shakes his head at Doug: “My grandmother is less of a yenta than you.” “Consider this your Chanukah miracle,” Doug says, walking away with the self-satisfaction that only a matchmaker can have. And he might be onto something, as Ashira, happily chatting away with Madame Vice President, sends a flirtatious look Assaf’s way.

Shortly before the menorah lighting, all the lighters have mysteriously disappeared — the first sign of many bad things to come. Ever the fixer, Frei heads to White House kitchen in search of matches. While he’s rummaging around in the supply closet, nearly tripping over the sacks of potatoes, a mysterious hand locks the door from the outside. One by one, the kitchen staff remove their uniforms to reveal themselves as neo-Nazis. Putting their sophisticated plan into action, they disable the wifi and radio signals, incapacitate the entire Secret Service, and take the entire White House hostage, refusing to yield until they’re given access to the nuclear codes.

This is a problem for the obvious reasons, complicated by the fact that everything that could have helped Frei — his Mossad-issued satellite cell phone, a bevy of deadly gadgets — remain under lock and key at White House security. The only weapons now at his disposal are the box of matches in his hand, the very many potatoes, and the ingenuity of his mind, which is recovering from champagne. The one thing he has going for him: As far as the terrorists know, the party attendant registered as “Ass Frei” is just a schmuck who had the chutzpah to show up to a black-tie reception in jeans. But if there is one Mossad agent who can turn potatoes and matches into makeshift molotov cocktails, survive long enough to retrieve his weapons and the only hope of reaching the outside world, and save all the hostages, his marriage, and Chanukah itself, while frying some neo-Nazi asses along the way, it might just be Assaf Freiberg.

Make no mistake: This is absolutely a Chanukah movie. Yippee-Frei-Fucking-Yi-Yay.