THRILLS AND HIGH ADVENTURE!
"Judith of the Jungle's Hanukkah Story!"
by Richard Nathan
Note: In this sketch, it is necessary to refer to three movie stars - a hero, a love interest, and a villain. In this version, I use Tom Cruise, Naomi Watts and Alan Rickman. Feel free to replace these names with other stars.
Before the lights come up, a voice introduces the story:
At age twenty-five, Judith Weinberger was
one of the most promising creative executives
in Hollywood. Then a script she passed on
became a mega-blockbuster at another
studio. Scorned by the people she thought
were her friends, Judith Weinberger left
Hollywood, never to be seen at the studios
again. But now, ten years later, in Africa, she
is a legend! She is... JUDITH OF THE
Lights come up on JUDITH OF THE JUNGLE in her jungle home. Enter a WARDEN from Judith's private animal sanctuary.
Judith of the Jungle! Thank goodness I found
Oy! So what's the mishegoss now? Poachers? An
attack by one of my old enemies?
No. It's sunset! You wanted me to remind you
to light your candles!
That's right! It's the first night of Hanukkah!
Judith takes out a menorah. She puts in to candles (the one in the middle and one on the far side. She lights the middle candle, takes it out of the menorah and uses it to light the candle on the side, and then puts the middle candle back in its place in the middle of the menorah.
Barukh atah Adonai Eloheinu whatever whatever.
There. All done.
I have heard of Hanukkah, but I do not remember
the story behind it. Isn't it something about an oil
Sure, that's part of it. But it's mostly like an action
An action picture?
Certainly! I'll tell you the whole magilah. The hero is
Judah Maccabee, a real mensch. Think Tom Cruise.
The villain is a Greek tyrant named Anticochus, a momzer!
Think Alan Rickman. So in the first ten minutes, we
introduce Cruise and Rickman.
Everyone knows you have to get the story started in the
first ten minutes. Otherwise you lose your audience.
Why are you telling me in terms of movies? I thought you
left the movie business.
No! The movie business left me! So Rickman's a Greek
who heads the Syrian army, which is besieging Israel. Why
a Greek is heading the Syrian army, don't ask me. Anyway,
Rickman thinks Tom Cruise is a nebbish, and he just laughs
at him, but secretly Cruise is the Hammer, a costumed
warrior who battles to keep Israel free.
Hanukkah is about a costumed hero? I never heard that
That's because you never heard it from me before! So
at the half hour mark, things have to start going bad. Like
maybe Rickman gets something on Cruise's girlfriend. Maybe
he's blackmailing her father.
Of course girlfriend. There's always a girlfriend. A shana
What is her name?
Naomi Watts. So Naomi asks Cruise for help. He rushes to
help her, but that means he needs to go to Syria. And while he's
gone, Rickman takes over Israel. So now we're ninety minutes
into the movie, and things are as bad as they can be for Cruise.
He's in the belly of the beast.
It's just how they talk in Hollywood. It means farblongjid. So
even though Cruise has lost everything, Naomi says she still
believes in him. Cruise sneaks back into Israel and breaks
into Rickman's castle. Rickman finds Cruise, and they have a
sword fight like you've never seen! Rickman knocks Cruise's
sword away, and he's about to kill Cruise, but Cruise grabs a
great big dreidel and bashes Rickman's on the head with it, and
Rickman drops dead! And Cruise opens the gates and his
army comes in and drives the Syrians out of Israel.
What about the oil shortage?
I'm coming to that. The Syrians left the Temple a mess. Cruise
has to clean it up for his marriage ceremony with Naomi Watts.
But the cleaning ceremony requires that they burn the sacred
oil for eight nights. But there's not enough oil. Tom holds Naomi
in his arms and gives her the bad news. The wedding is off. She
tells him their love will find a way. And lo - God was moved
by Tom's love for Naomi, and He made the oil last for eight nights.
And that's why we celebrate Hanukkah!
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THEATER OF THRILLS AND HIGH ADVENTURE!
© 2005 by Richard Nathan. All rights reserved
The author grants all internet uses to print these scripts for their own, personal, non-commercial use. No other use may be made without the author's permission. Without limiting the foregoing, the plays may not be staged without the author's express permission.
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