Posted April 20, 2023
JBFC Announces Lineup for the Highly Anticipated Jewish Film Festival
The Jacob Burns Film Center (JBFC) is pleased to announce the 22nd Annual Jewish Film Festival from May 17–25, 2023. The lineup boasts stunning, thought-provoking, mesmerizing, and often humorous works from around the world including seven new diverse cinematic narratives and documentaries, and four beloved films from past Jewish Film Festivals. A host of renowned filmmakers and actors will join us for Q&As, and two post-screening receptions will offer opportunities for community fellowship. The festival is sponsored by Roberta & Joseph Rosenblum, American Jewish Committee (AJC) Westchester/Fairfield, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
“This year’s lineup once again brings spectacular films from around the world to the Jacob Burns Film Center,” said Bruni Burres, longtime curator of the Jewish Film Festival. “The festival presents an extraordinary opportunity to bring various kinds of lived Jewish experiences to the forefront, while elevating the bar for visual storytelling.”
The JBFC member pre-sale opens Wednesday, April 26 at noon. Tickets go on sale to the general public on Tuesday, May 2 at noon.
2022. Dir. Ady Walter
Yiddish with subtitles. 114 m.
May 17 at 6:30 (OPENING NIGHT): Q&A with actors Moshe Lobel, Petro Ninovskyi, and Lili Rosen; Reception follows.
May 21 at 6:00: Q&A with actors Moshe Lobel, Petro Ninovskyi, and Lili Rosen
Spanning 24 hours in the life of a vibrant, Yiddish-speaking village on the eve of the 1941 Nazi invasion of Soviet Ukraine, this film depicts the simmering tensions between tradition and modernity against the backdrop of looming disaster.
2018. Dir. Alon Zingman
Hebrew with subtitles. 10 episodes (40 m. each)
Program 1 (episodes 1–5, 215 m. with intermission): May 18 at 1:30 and May 20 at 1:00
Program 2 (episodes 6–10, 215 m. with intermission): May 21 at 1:00 and May 23 at 1:00
This Israeli TV series tells the story of world-renowned musician and orchestra conductor, Noah Gamliel (Lior Ashkenazi), as he abandons fame and fortune to return home to tend to his ailing father and take over the local choir. Unbeknownst to his family and closest friends, he is facing a devastating personal and professional challenge of his own. This series will be presented in two parts, perfect for a binge-watch!
FOUR WINTERS: A STORY OF JEWISH PARTISAN RESISTANCE AND BRAVERY IN WWII
2022. Dir. Julia Mintz
English. 90 m.
May 18 at 3:30: Q&A with filmmaker Julia Mintz
and May 22 at 1:30
Over 25,000 Jewish partisans fought back against the Nazis and their collaborators from deep inside the forests of Eastern Europe. Against extraordinary odds, these determined men and women engaged in acts of sabotage and escaped Nazi slaughter, transforming along the way from young innocents raised in close-knit families to courageous resistance fighters. Shattering the myth of Jewish passivity, the last surviving partisans tell their stunning stories in this heartfelt narrative of heroism and resilience.
LET IT BE MORNING
2023. Dir. Eran Kolirin
Arabic/Hebrew with subtitles. 101 m.
May 18 at 6:00, May 20 at 2:10, and May 23 at 3:50
The story of a Palestinian-born Israeli citizen who returns to the Arab village where he grew up, only to get cut off from the outside world and trapped in an unexpected situation. Adapted from the eponymous international best-selling novel, the film is about a state of siege—both internal and external.
OUR (ALMOST COMPLETELY TRUE) STORY
2022. Dir. Don Scardino.
English. 92 m.
May 18 at 8:10, May 21 at 12:00, and May 24 at 1:30
Written by and starring real-life couple Mariette Hartley and Jerry Sroka (Antz, Family Guy), this film is a delightfully sincere romantic comedy about the trials and tribulations of love, dating, and romance past middle age. Based “almost completely” on Hartley and Sroka’s unlikely (but real) romance, it’s filled with over-the-top bits about the perils of online dating, wistful remembrances of the old days of Hollywood, and awkward run-ins with exes.
2022. Dir. Ofir Raul Grazier
English/Hebrew with subtitles. 127 m.
May 19 at 4:00, May 20 at 4:30, and May 21 at 2:30
The latest from Ofir Raul Grazier (The Cakemaker) is a beautifully acted, psychologically complex story tackling sexual identity and personal trauma through the eyes of a man whose return to Israel reconnects him with a childhood friend and his fiancée. Their conversations, filled with quiet tenderness, lead to powerful reconnections that ultimately change everyone’s lives.
BOMBSHELL: THE HEDY LAMARR STORY
2017. Dir. Alexandra Dean
English. 90 m.
May 19 at 1:30, May 22 at 6:00: Q&A with filmmaker Alexandra Dean, and May 24 at 4:00
Starlet and screen siren Hedy Lamarr is finally given the recognition she deserves in Alexandra Dean’s eye-opening documentary portrait, which weaves together rare recordings and interviews with excerpts from Lamarr’s own diary to reveal this genius of science and film. From her 1933 role in an erotic film to her multiple inventions—including an untrackable radio-controlled torpedo signal and the cellular technology now used in WiFi—Hedy Lamarr lived a very full life.
THE GARDEN OF THE FINZI-CONTINIS
1970. Dir. Vittorio De Sica.
Italian with subtitles. 94 m.
May 20 at 12:00, May 22 at 3:30, May 23 at 7:00, and May 25 at 1:30
The exquisite Oscar winner for Best Foreign Film, Vittorio De Sica’s The Garden of the Finzi-Continis, is finally available in the US again—now in a beautifully restored version. Best known for his film Bicycle Thieves, De Sica tells the story of a group of Jewish aristocrats in 1930’s Italy, who are largely sheltered from the growing antisemitism in their country. This seemingly straightforward narrative becomes complicated as the Fascist movement grows in strength and begins to penetrate the orbit of their family.
A FISH IN THE BATHTUB
1999. Dir. Joan Micklin Silver
English. 96 m.
May 20 at 7:00 and May 23 at 1:15
A laugh-out-loud tale of the sudden bust-up of a long marriage—which distresses children, grandchildren, and an entire suburban New York neighborhood alike. Real-life husband and wife Jerry Stiller (Sam) and Anne Meara (Molly) have been “happily married” and bickering nonstop for 40 years. When it all comes to a head, Molly up and leaves him, moving in with her grown son Joel (the superb Mark Ruffalo) and his family.
2022. Dir. Krzysztof Lang
Polish with subtitles. 115 m.
May 24 at 6:30 (Sponsored by American Jewish Committee Westchester/Fairfield) with Q&A to follow, and May 25 at 3:30
Two students, Hania and Janek, fall madly in love amidst the social turmoil and antisemitism in 1960s Warsaw. Can their love survive in a country overwhelmed by rebellion? Beautifully filmed in vivid colors with lively music and superb performances, March 68 is the Romeo and Juliet story of its time.
2022. Dir. Marvin Samel
English. 102 m.
May 19 at 7:00: Q&A (virtual) with filmmaker Marvin Samel and
May 25 at 6:30 (Closing Night): Q&A (virtual) with filmmaker Marvin Samel. Reception follows.
A heartwarming movie based on the director’s own life, iMordecai features terrific performances from Emmy-winning actor Judd Hirsch (TV’s Taxi) as Mordecai Samels and Academy Award-nominated actress Carol Kane (Hester Street) as his wife—two Holocaust survivors living in Miami. When Mordecai takes the big step of getting an iPhone, the device opens him up to novel experiences and adventures, making him feel like a kid again. An uplifting comedy and a love letter to the city of Miami, iMordecai urges us all to live life to the fullest.