The Arts

A Grunt’s-Eye-View Of Modern Combat

Samuel Fuller’s WWII epic ‘The Big Red One’ raises big moral questions.
Special To The Jewish Week

Lee Marvin in “The Big Red One.” Warner Brothers

Inside A Sonderkommando’s Shoes

‘Son of Saul’ places the audience ‘in the middle of the killing machine’; Nuremberg documentary, ‘The Memory of Justice,’ restored after 40 years.

Special To The Jewish Week

Death may not be, to borrow Paul Celan’s famous construction, “a master from Germany,” but for Jewish filmmakers of a certain age, the ashen shadow of the crematoria is never far away. More than other filmmakers, perhaps, they are acutely aware that close behind them are the beating wings of the angel of death.

Geza Röhrig as Auschwitz Sonderkommando Saul Ausländer in “Son of Saul.” Courtesy of N.Y. Film Festival

When ‘Family Artifacts’ Divide A Family

Based on a survivor’s experiences in forced labor camps, ‘Letters to Sala’ explores how one clan deals with its back pages.

Special To The Jewish Week

Auschwitz-Birkenau. Majdanek. Treblinka. Bergen-Belsen. Sobibor. When we think of the Holocaust, the names of a handful of death camps spring immediately to mind — names that we recite ritually on Yom Kippur and on Yom HaShoah. But, as new research over the past decade has shown, there were more than 30 times as many forced labor camps as extermination camps, and the experience of their prisoners is still, for the most part, yet to be told.

Anita Keal, portrays Holocaust survivor Sala Garncarz in new play at TBG Theatre. It is based on Ann Kirschner’s “Sala’s Gift.”

Alexandria Lost, And Found

Nearly 40 years after Yitzhak Gormezano Goren’s novel ‘Alexandrian Summer’ was published in Israel, its English edition arrives.

Culture Editor

When the Egyptian-born writer Yitzhak Gormezano Goren began thinking of writing a novel in Israel in the 1970s, he considered subjects like Jerusalem, the kibbutz, the Holocaust and Tel Aviv, the kinds of themes Israeli writers dealt with. But he wasn’t that drawn to Jerusalem, hadn’t spent time on a kibbutz, didn’t have experience of the Holocaust, and while he loved Tel Aviv, he didn’t feel it was his subject, that it would have soul. While studying in New York City in 1975 and at a distance from the Middle East, he realized his story was the Alexandria of his youth, a world that was no more. 

Yitzhak Gormezano Goren’s novel 'Alexandrian Summer.'

License To Shill

A Jewish singer-songwriter finds success with catchy commercials.


You may have never heard of singer-songwriter Cathy Heller, but chances are you’ve heard her music.

Heller has penned songs for American Airlines, Hasbro and the Disney Channel. Elisabeth Caren

Chapters Of Introspection

New books that capture the spirit of the holidays.

Culture Editor

These are books unlikely to be on the same shelf, let alone the same bookcase, or in the same home. Some are titles that invoke the spirit of the holidays, whether playfully or subtly or seriously; some are appropriate for these days of introspection in suggesting new ways of seeing. 

Books from left to right; 'Days of Awe', 'Made In Detroit', 'The Point of Vanishing'

The Executions That Still Shock

Two new plays revisit Roy Cohn and the Rosenbergs, whose stories continue to haunt the Jewish psyche.

Special To The Jewish Week

Whether it was the crime of the century or a government frame-up of an innocent Jewish couple — or, as is more likely, something in the middle — the execution for treason of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg continues to send shockwaves through American culture. Among the most troubling and fascinating aspects of the case was the involvement of Roy Cohn, the (secretly) gay, corrupt Jewish attorney who prosecuted the Jewish couple. Two plays that opened last week in New York, Joan Beber’s “In Bed With Roy Cohn,” which imagines Cohn’s last days, and Karen Ludwig’s one-woman show, “Where Was I?” in which she recalls playing Ethel Rosenberg in the 1992 TV film, “Citizen Cohn,” testify to the unslackened grip of the Rosenberg case on our collective imagination. 

Scene from Joan Beber's "In Bed With Roy Cohn," which seeks to "find some humanity in him." Russ Rowland

Giving Voice To Cantorate’s ‘Golden Age’

Special to the Jewish Week

He’s like a Mississippi bluesman trying to keep alive the authentic Delta sound for a new generation.

"It's my quixotic quest to keep his music alive," says Cantor Jack Mendelson.

Meet The Jewish Singer Whose Music You Already Know From McDonald’s, MTV Ads


You may have never heard of singer-songwriter Cathy Heller, but chances are you’ve heard her music.

Cathy Heller

Across The Great Divide

Ruth Dayan, Raymonda Tawil and a hard-won friendship amid the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Culture Editor

The former wife of Israel’s most famous general, and a Palestinian journalist and activist have been talking, meeting, trying to understand each other, fighting, reconciling and laughing together since a chance meeting soon after the Six-Day War.

“A moral meeting point”.Ethel Dizon
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