New York Jewish Film Festival

‘Waltzing’ Into The Future With Bashir's New Film

‘Waltzing With Bashir’ director’s new science-fiction film, five years in the making, is a confusing vision; films about Amy Winehouse, ‘the Jewish Cardinal’ and a Molly Picon retrospective.

Special To The Jewish Week
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This is the second of three articles on this year’s N.Y. Jewish Film Festival.

Ari Folman’s 2008 animated film “Waltz With Bashir” was a breakthrough effort on many levels, one of a series of Israeli films to be nominated for the best foreign-language Academy Award, and a tough-minded work that helped forge a new subgenre of animated documentaries; it was a film that confirmed what some of us knew for a long time — that a “cartoon” could be serious and demanding. Anyone with an interest in film was eagerly awaiting Folman’s next project.

BBC documentary about the late Amy Winehouse focuses on one of her concerts.

NY Jewish Film Festival Goes In Fresh Directions

‘Sorrow and the Pity’ director’s new film memoir is a highlight of first week of this year's festival.

Special To The Jewish Week
Story Includes Video: 

Note: This is the first of three articles on this year’s N.Y. Jewish Film Festival.

Now in its 23rd year, the New York Jewish Film Festival, which opens on Jan. 8, is not only one of the oldest such events in the world, it is also becoming one of the biggest. With this year’s festival, the Film Society of Lincoln Center and The Jewish Museum are adding several sidebar events that will take them in some interesting new directions. Ultimately, what really matters is less the ambition of the programmers than the quality of the films they select.

Howie Mandel is one of the comics interviewed in Alan Zweig’s “When Jews Were Funny."

Life Is A Cabaret

Understanding the Jewish past, in the form of a German bandleader in Israel and the theatrical world the Nazis destroyed in Berlin.

Special to the Jewish Week

The musical thread that began this year’s New York Jewish Film Festival (with films about blues singer Doc Pomus and the iconic song “Hava Nagila,” among others) has persisted quite charmingly into the annual event’s final week.

Max Raabe’s Palast-Orchester in “Max Raabe in Israel.”

Light And Dark At N.Y. Jewish Film Fest

Week 2 offerings move from the Shoah to an Israeli counter-terrorism force to Joe Papp and ‘Hava Nagila.’

Special to the Jewish Week

If the first week of the New York Jewish Film Festival was largely about music, both as reality and metaphor, the second is a spectrum that ranges from dark to light, 

Scenes from  “Numbered,” .

‘Hava Nagila,’ The Film

Documentary chronicles song’s journey from shtetl to cliché.


You’re at a wedding or bar mitzvah, mingling at the bar or catching up with a distant relative,

“Hava Nagila (The Movie)”. Courtesy “Have Nagila The Movie”

Svigals, Lerner Team Up On Score For Silent Film

Mix of klezmer and modernism as accompaniment to ‘The Yellow Ticket.’

Special To The Jewish Week

Alicia Svigals, one of the great klezmer violinists working today, had written music for feature films and documentaries before, so she thought she knew what she was getting into when someone suggested she score a silent film. “The Yellow Ticket” is a 1918 German-made drama, restored under the auspices of the Foundation for Jewish Culture.

Silent no more: Pola Negri and Guido Herzfeld in the 1918 “The Yellow Ticket.”  Courtesy of Deutsches Filminstitut

Common Chords At N.Y. Jewish Film Festival

A number of the offerings, from “AKA Doc Pomus” to “Kol Nidre,” pivot on music.

Special to the Jewish Week

Dan Edelstyn and his wife, Hillary Powell, with their vodka in “How to Re-Establish a Vodka Empire.”  Tim Sullivan

New York Jewish Film Fest’s Sweet Farewell

From the cafés of Paris to the Catskills, festival picks ruminate on the role of the Jewish artist in modernity.

Special to the Jewish Week

It isn’t hard to find a common theme uniting some of the more interesting entries in the final week of the New York Jewish Film Festival this year. From the cafés of Paris to the Catskills, the documentaries on display are ruminations on the role of the Jewish artist in modernity. One could even argue, somewhat tongue-in-cheek, that the excellent Polish thriller “Daas” is about a Jewish artist. A con artist.

Scene from “Welcome to Kutsher’s: The Last Catskills Resort,” the festival’s closing-night film.

A ‘Passion’ To Tell Entebbe Hero’s Tale

‘Follow Me’ recounts the life of Prime Minister Netanyahu’s brother.

Editor And Publisher

Yonatan Pinchot, 14, of Silver Spring, Md., has a special connection to new documentary film called “Follow Me,” telling the personal story of an authentic, modern-day Israeli hero.

Ari Pinchot, above, was moved by the story of Yonatan Netanyahu, in the circle.

Movies Around The Clock

From wristwatch metaphors in ‘Restoration’ to the cross currents of past and present in ‘Remembrance,’ Jewish film fest meditates on the passage of time.

Special to the Jewish Week

Jewish thought tends to classify time in highly specific quantities: seven days from Shabbat to Shabbat, 49 days of counting the Omer, generation to generation.

A scene from Joseph Madmony’s “Restoration,” about an antique furniture craftsman whose business is on the verge of bankruptcy.
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