||Acclaimed actor Liev Schrieber (DAYTRIPPERS, THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE) makes his directorial debut in this adaptation of Jonathan Safran Foer's bestselling novel about a young Jewish-American writer of the same name. Mixing equal parts black comedy and poignant drama, the film follows Jonathan (Elijah Wood) as he travels to the Ukraine to solve a family secret. There he meets his barely legitimate tour guides: Alex (Eugene Hutz, member of the folk-punk band Gogol Bordello), a cosmopolitan playboy obsessed with Michael Jackson and other American icons; Alex's grandfather (Boris Leskin), a man worn down by life who seems to be losing his grip on reality; and Sammy Davis, Jr. Jr, the "seeing-eye bitch" dog who comes along for the ride. As Jonathan closes in on his goal--to find the story behind the woman who saved his grandfather during the Holocaust--it becomes clear that Alex's grandfather has a dark secret of his own that needs to be, as the film suggests, illuminated.^EVERYTHING IS ILLUMINATED lives up to the quirkiness of its source material, and is similar to films like BEING JOHN MALKOVICH or LOST IN TRANSLATION. Filmed on location in Prague, the film features breathtaking landscapes, including a memorable scene in a field of sunflowers. Also notable is the film's soundtrack, which features songs by Gogol Bordello, as well as an outstanding ethnic score by Paul Cantelon. Quirky, funny, sweet, and sad, Schreiber's excellent adaptation provides both closure and hope for survivors of the Holocaust.