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New York Jewish Film Festival 2010

January 13, 2010 - January 28, 2010

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Politics: 8 film(s)
Within the Whirlwind
Ahead of Time
Chronicle of a Kidnap
Gevald!
Happy Jews
Leon Blum: For All Mankind
The Peretzniks / Perecowicze
Ultimatum



CLOSING NIGHT
Within the Whirlwind
Marleen Gorris, Germany/Poland/Belgium, 2009, 98m
New York Premiere/ Watch the trailer.
Jewish poet and professor Evgenia Ginzburg lived a privileged life in Stalinist Russia—until faced with trumped-up charges of conspiracy. Stripped of her Communist Party membership and teaching post, Ginzburg served a ten-year sentence in a Siberian gulag, surviving through the kindness of her fellow inmates and the power of poetry. Based on Ginzburg’s memoirs, this epic from Oscar-winner Marleen Gorris (Antonia’s Line) features stunning performances by Emily Watson (Breaking the Waves) and Ulrich Tukur (The Lives of Others).
Thu Jan 28: 1:00pm
Thu Jan 28: 6:15pm



Ahead of Time
Bob Richman, USA, 2009, 73m
U.S. Premiere
Born in Brooklyn in 1911, Ruth Gruber had an extraordinary career as a foreign correspondent and photojournalist spanning seven decades. The first journalist to enter the Soviet Arctic (in 1935), she escorted Holocaust refugees to America in ’44, covered the Nuremberg trials in ’46, and reported on the plight of the ship Exodus in ’47. In this riveting documentary Gruber recounts her adventures with gentle humor and deep insight.
Ruth Gruber and Zeva Oelbaum, Producer, will be in attendance at all screenings. Bob Richman, Director, will be in attendance on 1/14.

preceded by


Making the Crooked Straight
Susan Cohn Rockefeller, USA, 2008, 29m
New York Premiere/ Watch the trailer.
Dr. Rick Hodes, an Orthodox Jew born on Long Island, has dedicated the past 20 years of his life to helping heal the sick and poor of Ethiopia, focusing on patients with tuberculosis of the spine. This extraordinary documentary explores his work, his unusual family life—he has fostered 17 children—and the spirituality guiding his choices. HBO Documentary Films.
Susan Cohn Rockefeller, Director, will be in attendance.
Thu Jan 28: 1:00pm
Thu Jan 28: 6:15pm



Gevald!
Ron Ofer & Yohai Hakak, Israel, 2009, 50m
New York Premiere
This astonishing documentary juxtaposes the lives of two of Israel’s most prominent ultra- Orthodox leaders. Shmuel Chaim Pappenheim is an anti-Zionist radical activist who organizes mass protests against the secular state. The late Avraham Ravitz was a former IDF soldier and a longtime Knesset member who worked within the system to advance his constituency’s religious agenda. This film closely follows them as the 2006 elections approach.

preceded by


Chronicle of a Kidnap
Nurit Kedar, Israel, 2008, 55m
New York Premiere
In this riveting documentary, activist Karnit Goldwasser steps into the media spotlight on behalf of her husband Ehud (Udi), a soldier abducted in 2006 by Hezbollah in Lebanon. The film is an intimate portrait of Karnit’s heroic efforts to lobby for Ehud’s release.
Thu Jan 28: 1:00pm
Thu Jan 28: 6:15pm



Leon Blum: For All Mankind
Jean Bodon, France, 2009, 58m
U.S. Premiere
This powerful documentary tells the story of a prominent French leader—a Jew who at different times was prime minister of France and a prisoner in the Buchenwald concentration camp. Blum devoted his life to improving the well-being of French workers and was an early champion of women’s rights. In 1936, he became prime minister; during his time in office, he led the Popular Front. In 1940, his socialist views and Jewish heritage placed him in jeopardy. The Vichy government sentenced him to five years in Buchenwald. After the war, Blum was welcomed home by the French people and was reelected prime minister.
Jean Bodon, Director, and Antoine Malamoud, Grandson of Leon Blum, will be in attendance. Jean Bodon will be attending only on Jan 18 and 19.

preceded by


Herskovits at the Heart of Blackness
Llewellyn Smith, USA, 2009, 57m
By tracing Black cultural roots directly to Africa, Melville J. Herskovits (1895-1963), a white Jewish anthropologist, instilled pride in many African Americans. However, he simultaneously undercut the scholarship of African American social scientists, dismissing their work as subjective and agenda driven. Interestingly, Herskovits’s work ultimately fueled the Black Power movement of the late 1960s. Using innovative animation and reenactments, this brilliant documentary examines the politics and power brokering associated with cultural history. Co-presented by the Margaret Mead Film and Video Festival.
Llewellyn Smith, Director, will be in attendance on Mon. Jan 18.
Thu Jan 28: 1:00pm
Thu Jan 28: 6:15pm



The Peretzniks / Perecowicze
Slawomir Grünberg, Poland/U.S, 2009, 92m
U.S. Premiere
Alumni of the Jewish Peretz School recall their adolescence in Lodz before the 1968 anti-Semitic campaign. The Peretzniks never fully said goodbye to Poland or their beloved schoolmates and teachers. Documentary filmmaker Grünberg gathers the diaspora of alumni to share memories of friendship, crushes, mischief, and the trauma of forced exile.
Slawomir Grunberg, Director, will be in attendance.

preceded by


Happy Jews
Jonathan Rozenbaum, Israel/Poland, 2008, 6m
U.S. Premiere
With home movies and a sense of humor, a young filmmaker reflects on a reunion of Polish Jews who emigrated as a result of the anti-Semitic campaign in 1968.
Thu Jan 28: 1:00pm
Thu Jan 28: 6:15pm



Ultimatum
Alain Tasma, France/Israel/Italy, 2008, 101m
New York Premiere
In this multinational thriller set during the 1990/91 Persian Gulf War, a young couple in Jerusalem declares battle with each other while Iraq threatens Israel with the possibility of chemical warfare. Luisa, a beautiful French-Italian student, her tempestuous lover Nathanaël, and their friends seal rooms, don gas masks, and wait in fear. Starring French heartthrob Gaspard Ulliel, the glamorous Jasmine Trinca, and an ensemble of Israel’s most talented actors, including Hana Laszlo, Lior Ashkenazi,and Sarah Adler.
Alain Tasma, Director, will be in attendance.

preceded by


Prrrride
Eitan Efrat and Sirah Foighel Brutmann, Netherlands/Israel, 2008, 3m
New York Premiere
A young Israeli performs as a one-man marching band while relating his mother’s fears about his military service.
Thu Jan 28: 1:00pm
Thu Jan 28: 6:15pm



This year's New York Jewish Film Festival was selected by Rachel Chanoff, Independent Curator; Andrew Ingall, Assistant Curator, The Jewish Museum; Richard Peña, Program Director, The Film Society of Lincoln Center; Aviva Weintraub, Associate Curator and Director of the NYJFF, The Jewish Museum.


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New York NY 10128

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