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The 23rd UK Jewish Film Festival will run from 6th – 21st November

 

 

UK JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL ANNOUNCES 2019 PROGRAMME
AND UK TOUR TO 20 CITIES

MAKING THIS YEAR’S EDITION THE LARGEST JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL
PROGRAMME IN THE WORLD

FESTIVAL GALAS INCLUDE JOJO RABBIT (SCARLETT JOHANSSON, SAM ROCKWELL) AND THE OPERATIVE (DIANE KRUGER, MARTIN FREEMAN)

 

Tickets on sale 26th September. Priority members booking from 23rd September.
Festival dates 6th November – 21st November.

UK Jewish Film is delighted to announce the 23rd UK Jewish Film Festival, which will run from 6th – 21st November at 15 cinemas across London. A UK tour of festival highlights to 20 towns and cities across England, Scotland and Wales will run until 12th December.

 

This year’s programme, comprising 96 films, plus Q&As and discussions with directors, actors, politicians, journalists and others, is the largest Jewish film festival programme in the world. The film programme includes 8 world premieres, 1 European premiere, 40 UK premieres, and films from 24 countries, including 23 films from the UK.

 

For 2019 the festival is launching its first ever Best Documentary Award with a jury headed up by BBC Storyville’s Nick Fraser and also comprising Anna Godas (CEO, Dogwoof), Laura Granditer (Managing Director, Immediate Films), Wendy Ide (Film Journalist, The Observer, Screen International), Charlie Phillips (Head of Video, The Guardian) and Tim Wardle (Director, Three Identical Strangers). Films in competition for this award are Advocate, Fiddler: Miracle of Miracles, The Human Factor, It Must Schwing! The Blue Note Story, The Last Resort and The State against Mandela and the Others.

 

Films in competition for the Dorfman Best Film Award are Dolce Fine Giornata, Flawless, Jojo Rabbit, My Polish Honeymoon, Stripped and The Unorthodox. Jurors are Jane Barclay (Producer, Blinded by the Light), Roanna Benn (Managing Director, Drama Republic), Phil de Semlyen (Global Film Editor, Time Out), James Kent (Director, Testament of Youth), Jane Lush (Chair, BAFTA) and Dan Mazer (Writer, Borat, Bruno, Who is America).

 

Films in competition for Best Debut Feature Award are Fig Tree, God of the Piano, The Humorist, Leona, My Polish Honeymoon and The Unorthodox. Jurors are Tammy Einav (CEO, adam&eveDDB), Satwant Gil (Director, Women in Film & Television), Marc Goldberg (CEO, Signature Entertainment), Ofir Raul Graizer (Director, The Cakemaker), Linda Kelsey (Journalist, Author) and Jason Solomons (Broadcaster, Film Critic, BBC).

 

GALAS

 

The Opening Night Gala is the UK Premiere of My Polish Honeymoon, the debut feature from French director Élise Otzenberger. This comedy follows recently- married Parisian couple (Anna and Adam) as they head off on a belated honeymoon to Poland, leaving their baby in the hands of Anna's parents. Immersed in a new but strangely familiar culture, they discover a Poland awash with absurd and wonderful characters, picture perfect beauty and unbearable sadness. Élise Otzenberger’s debut feature is a life affirming tale about rediscovering roots and being Jewish today.

 

The Closing Night Gala is the Oscar tipped satire from Fox Searchlight Pictures, Jojo Rabbit, which recently won the People’s Choice Award at the Toronto International Film Festival. Written and directed by cult filmmaker Taika Waititi (Jewish on his mother’s side, while his father is Maori), this World War II satire follows Jojo, a lonely German boy whose imaginary friend is an idiotic Adolf Hitler (Waititi, in a boisterous performance). A keen (if slightly incompetent) member of the Hitler Youth, Jojo's world view is turned upside down when he discovers his single mother (Scarlett Johansson) is hiding a young Jewish girl in their attic. Also starring Oscar-winner Sam Rockwell and Rebel Wilson, and daringly confronting nationalism and racism, Jojo Rabbit is as hilariously sharp as  The Producers  and as sentimental as  Life is Beautiful.

 

The Centrepiece Gala is the UK Premiere of The Operative, directed by Yuval Adler and starring Diane Kruger and Martin Freeman. British citizen Rachel is a rootless polyglot, but with a deep love for Israel – traits that make her an ideal Mossad agent. Recruited by a Berlin-based British Jew she is sent to Tehran to spy on a businessman. Based on the Israeli novel, The English Teacher, and featuring a stellar Israeli and international cast, The Operative asks whether love for a man is more important than service to your nation.

 

The Documentary Gala is the World Premiere of The Human Factor, followed by a Q&A with the film’s director Dror Moreh (The Gatekeepers), and producer Teddy Leifer (Oscar nominee for The Invisible War, Oscar winner for Icarus). With the end of the Cold War and America becoming a sole global superpower, the 1990s brought the promise of a new world order. The dramatic geopolitical shift also raised hopes for a comprehensive peace between Israel and two of its bitterest enemies, the Palestinians and Syria. Featuring key players, this fascinating and important documentary looks back at a pivotal decade which started with the signing of the Oslo Accords and ended with a bitter sense of disillusionment, leading to the Second Intifada.

  

Michael Etherton, Chief Executive of UK Jewish Film, said: “We are the UK’s only film festival dedicated to telling stories about Jewish life and experience, and the majority of our UK and international films would not otherwise make it to cinemas or streaming services. At a time of increasing fears about the rise of racism, including antisemitism, the UK Jewish Film Festival has a crucial role to play in making sure that Jewish life and culture is being adequately represented on our cinema screens. That’s why this year, with the support of the BFI Audience Fund, we are unrolling an extensive and important nationwide tour. From Inverness to Brighton and Bangor to Norwich, we will reveal wonderful cinematic snapshots of Jewish life to diverse audiences who may not otherwise have any interaction with Jewish culture.”

PROGRAMME OVERVIEW

The UK Jewish Film Festival programme this year reflects both the global reach and historical depth of Jewish culture, taking us from 15th Century Aleppo (The Lost Crown) to futuristic neon-lit Tokyo (Call for Dreams) via mid-century Miami Beach (The Last Resort).

The richness of the programme allows for some interesting and at times conflicting trajectories to emerge. In Nadav Lapid’s Berlinale-winning Synonyms, the protagonist wishes to leave Israel and reinvent himself as a French citizen in Paris, whereas From Slavery to Freedom and Ethiopian drama Fig Tree tell stories of people who are desperate to escape their home countries due to war or persecution and settle in Israel instead. And whilst we continue to be fascinated by past events (The Human Factor, The State Against Mandela and the Others, Murer: Anatomy of a Trial), current political and social trends loom large in documentaries such as King Bibi and Lieber-man and dramas such as Yaron Shani’s Love Trilogy and the dystopian Autonomies (from the creators of Shtisel).

The programme this year not only presents the incredible output of more artists than ever before, it also celebrates their many talents by delving into their respective worlds. We have dedicated a special strand to documentaries about the world of music, including a documentary about Fiddler on the Roof and a film about avant-garde musician Chilly Gonzales, and another strand to films about trailblazing photographers.

New films about the late Oscar-winning Czech director Milos Forman and Shoah’s film editor Ziva Postec are also in the mix, shedding light on the art and magic of filmmaking.

INCLUSIVITY AND DIVERSITY

As always, the values of inclusivity and diversity frame our artistic decisions and vision. A strand of bold, funny and thought-provoking queer short films celebrates the growing acceptance and understanding of the fluidity of gender and sex.

Another new strand, made possible by the Toni Schiff Memorial Fund, brings eight new films that explore the experiences of girls and women during and following the Holocaust. While, inevitably, the films expose the merciless brutality of war, their focus is elsewhere – on women’s bravery and determination to rescue themselves and others, to stand as witnesses, and, most importantly, to flourish, thrive and rebuild.

The Festival also features films that mark notable cinematic milestones including the 20th anniversary of the Oscar-nominated Jewish-Welsh epic, Solomon & Gaenor, the only film ever made in Yiddish and Welsh. The film will screen in London and then on tour across Wales and the UK with the director Paul Morrison and actors attending many screenings. It’s also the 10th anniversary of Coen Brothers’ wry comedy classic A Serious Man, and the 30th anniversary of the delightful Oscar-winning comedy, Driving Miss Daisy.

 

 

NEW CREATIVE TALENT

 

UK Jewish Film continues its focus on supporting a new generation of creative talent and this year has commissioned and produced two new British short films through its Pears Short Film Fund.  Both films will receive their world premieres on Monday 11th November at the Phoenix Cinema.

Home, a stop-motion animation, directed by Anita Bruvere, is a true story of community, immigration, and diversity, told through the history of a single building: 19 Princelet Street, Spitalfields, East London.

 

On the Beaches, a drama based on a true event, directed by Luke Rogers, is set in Norfolk in 1933. After running away from home, Kitty and her brother David cheer themselves up by playing soldiers. But their game takes an unexpected turn when they discover a suspicious German hiding in a clifftop hut. The man is a Jewish refugee by the name of Albert Einstein.

 

NEW TV

 

Among this year’s sneak previews of new TV shows is Autonomies, the new TV series from the director of Netflix’s Shtisel. The series imagines an alternative reality in which Israel is split into two separate entities: the secular State of Israel, whose capital is Tel Aviv, and, on the other side of a dividing wall, an ultra-orthodox autonomy based in Jerusalem. The battle over the custody of a girl who was born into a Haredi family but has been raised by secular parents threatens to push the two territories into irrevocable chaos. The screening will be followed by a panel discussion, which will try to determine just how much of what Autonomies portrays is already a reality.

ANTISEMITISM


A number of films explore issues surrounding growing concerns over the rise of antisemitism in Britain and Europe. Why Do They Hate Us? was prompted by a series of deadly attacks in Paris in 2015. Inspired by his son’s query about why Jews were one of the targets, Alexandre Amiel, a French-Moroccan Jewish filmmaker, set out to make a trilogy of films whose aim is to trace the origins of modern xenophobia in France towards Jewish, Arab and Black communities. The film is a fascinating, if disturbing, journey into the dark depths of prejudice as it is experienced by members of the largest Jewish community in Europe. The film is preceded by a German short, Kippa, based on true events, which reflect the context in which most German Jewish children have been withdrawn from regular state schools for their safety. The films will be followed by a discussed with leading politicians, names to be confirmed.

 

 

 

OFFICIAL SELECTION (FEATURES)

Title

Details

Premiere Status

Short Synopsis

209 Rue Saint-Maur, Paris 10éme: The Neighbours

(Ruth Zylberman, France, 2017)

UK Premiere

In this captivating documentary, filmmaker Ruth Zylberman, retraces the footsteps of the Jewish women, men and children for whom 209 rue Saint-Maur, Paris, 10éme was once home, pondering over the intricate relationship between place, community and identity.

The Accidental Spy

(Nicola Alice Hens, Germany/ France, 2019)

N/A

At four and a half feet tall, Martha Cohn – then as today – may not look like much of a threat, but her incredible bravery and resourcefulness contributed to the Nazis’ eventual defeat. The Accidental Spy is as dynamic as the woman whose extraordinary story it tells.

Advocate

(Phillipe Bellaiche + Rachel Leah Jones, Israel/ Canada/ Switzerland, 2019)

N/A

Having represented Palestinians in Israeli courts

for the past five decades, human-rights lawyer

Leah Tsemel is a symbol of the ongoing fight

in Israel/Palestine against the occupation. This

compelling documentary follows Tsemel as she

defends two of her recent clients, one of whom is a 13-year-old boy.

 

Analyse This

(Harold Ramis, USA/ Australia, 1999)

N/A

Billy Crystal as the neurotic doctor and Robert De Niro as the mobster in distress are a match made in heaven in this 20-year-old comedy gem.

Autonomies

(Ori Elon, Israel, 2019)

UK Premiere

From the creators of Shtisel, this thriller series imagines a reality in which Israel is split into two entities: a secular state and an ultra-orthodox autonomy. The battle over the custody of a girl threatens to push both into chaos.

 

The Bird Catcher

(Ross Clarke, Norway/UK, 2019)

N/A

Esther, a beautiful Jewish-Norwegian teenager, manages to escape the Nazis and winds up on an occupied farm, where she pretends to be a boy. Suspenseful and chilling, The Bird Catcher sheds light on the little-known plight of Norwegian Jews during the war.

 

Call for Dreams

(Ran Slavin, Israel/ Japan, 2018)

N/A

Experimental Israeli filmmaker, musician and

artist Ran Slavin follows in the footsteps of Alfred Hitchcock and David Lynch in this visually striking meditation on the nature of dreams and the elusive boundary between them and our waking lives

A Cantor’s Head

(Erik Greenberg Anjou, USA, 2019)

UK Premiere

Looking back at his long career, Jack Mendelson and his many admirers and protégés explain the magic of this centuries-long art form, which so well combines spiritual exploration, communal bonding and dazzling showmanship.

Chained

(Yaron Shani, Israel/Germany, 2019)

UK Premiere

Facing mounting pressure at both home and work, idealistic police officer Rashi struggles to keep things under control. Chained, winner of the best Israeli feature award at the Jerusalem Film Festival, explores the thin line that separates love from madness.

 

The Dead of Jaffa

(Ram Loevy, Israel, 2019)

N/A

Politically engaged Israeli director Ram Loevy’s new, heart-wrenching film is a sharp comment on the roots – and future – of a decades-long conflict.

The Diary of Diana B.

(Dana Budisavljević, Croatia/Slovenia/ Serbia, 2019)

UK Premiere

Based on the diaries of Diane Budisavljevic

(1941-1945), this captivating docu-drama tells the story of the Innsbruck-born, Catholic woman’s remarkable aid operation in Zagreb during the war.

DOLCE FINE GIORNATA

(Jacek Borcuch, Poland, 2019)

UK Premiere

An elegant and incisive take on Europe’s refugee crisis and what has remained of its post-war liberal values.

Driving Miss Daisy

(Bruce Beresford, USA, 1989)

N/A

In celebration of its 30th anniversary, Oscar winning drama Driving Miss Daisy returns to

cinema screens with a dazzling restoration. Jessica Tandy is wonderful as the titular affluent elderly Jewish woman whose resentment towards Hoke (Morgan Freeman in one of his best roles), her black chauffeur, is gradually replaced with compassion and love.

Echo

(Amikam Kovner + Assaf Snir, Israel, 2018)

UK Premiere

Having been married for 15 years, Ella and Avner seem to their friends to be the perfect couple. Avner’s faith in his marriage, however, takes a hit when he accidentally finds out that Ella is having an affair. Superbly written, directed and acted, Echo is a suspenseful and stylish psychological thriller.

Fiddler: A Miracle of Miracles

(Max Lewkowicz, USA, 2019)

UK Premiere

This documentary tells the fascinating story of the beloved Broadway show and film and explain the reasons for their ongoing and universal success. Featuring Topol and Itzhak Perlman, among many others, this is a joyous celebration of a true Jewish classic.

Fiddler on the Roof

(Norman Jewison, USA, 1971)

N/A

The classic cinematic version of Sholem Aleichem’s ultimate shtetl experience is back for one merry screening in the former Jewish heartland of London. Expect singing with your fellow viewers, dancing in the aisles and fancy dressing (optional).

Fig Tree

(Aäläm-Wärqe

Davidian, Israel/ Germany/ France/Ethiopia, 2018)

UK Premiere

Set against the backdrop of the Ethiopian Civil War in the late 1980s, Fig Tree is a lyrical and moving reflection on the power of first love, and the terror of war.

Flawless

(Sharon Maymon + Tal Granit, Israel/Germany, 2019)

UK Premiere

Directed by the team behind The Farewell Party and A Matter of Size, Flawless channels classic American teen movies while touching on issues such as gender transition and peer pressure in the digital age.

Forman vs. Forman

(Helena

Trestíková + Jakub Hejna, Czech Republic/France, 2019)

N/A

This fascinating documentary charts the rise to fame of Czech-born two-time Oscar-winning director Milos Forman – the man behind classics such as One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Hair and Amadeus.

From Slavery to Freedom

(Arkadi Kogan, Israel, 2019)

UK Premiere

From Slavery to Freedom tells the story of the Refusenik movement and the person who has become its symbol, Natan Sharansky, found guilty of high treason in 1977.

Ganz: How I Lost My Beetle

(Suzanne Raes, Netherlands, 2019)

UK Premiere

This delightful documentary tells the incredible story of Josef Ganz, a Jewish car engineer who had to flee Nazi Germany and the surprising origins of a 20th century icon, the Volkswagen Beetle.

The Glass Room

(Julius Sevcik, Czech Republic, 2019)

World Premiere

Based on the Man Booker-shortlisted novel of the same name and inspired by Mies van der Rohe-designed landmark Villa Tugendhat In Moravia, The Glass Room is a breathtakingly stylish and quietly transgressive drama.

God of the Piano

(Italy Tal, Israel, 2019)

UK Premiere

When Anat, the scion of a distinguished musical family, learns that her newborn baby is deaf, she decides to do the unthinkable, hoping that that would allow her to keep the family’s dream intact. This nuanced and suspenseful debut explores familial expectations, overpowering ambitions and the sacrifices we are willing to make in order to fulfil them.

Good Morning Son

(Sharon Bar Ziv, Israel, 2018)

N/A

Good Morning Son is an intimate, chamber drama, which despite the heartache and struggle, is also full of hope, humour and, most importantly, love.

Henri Dauman: Looking Up

(Peter Kenneth Jones, USA, 2018)

UK Premiere

This documentary tells the story of the French Jewish boy who endured several tragedies in his youth to become one of the most prominent chroniclers of American – and indeed, global – history.

How About Adolf?

(Sönke Wortmann, Germany, 2018)

UK Premiere

How About Adolf? is an outrageously funny satire that bravely comments on changing attitudes in German society to the trauma of the war and its legacy.

The Human Factor

(Droh Moreh, UK, 2019)

UK Premiere

Directed by Dror Moreh (The Gatekeepers), this fascinating documentary takes us back to 1990s, a pivotal decade in the history of Israel’s relations with its neighbours, starting with the Oslo Accords and ending with bitter disillusionment, leading to the Second Intifada.

 

The Humorist

(Michael Idov, Russia/Latvia/ Czech Republic, 2018)

UK Premiere

Set in 1984, at the height of the Cold War, The Humorist tells the story of successful Russian-Jewish stand-up comedian Boris Arkadiev.

An Impossible Love

(Catherine Corsini, France, 2018)

N/A

An Impossible Love, adapted

from a novel by Christine Angot, is an elegant and engrossing study of a mother-daughter relationship over several decades.

It Must Schwing! The Blue Note Story

(Eric Friedler, USA/ Germany, 2018)

 

This documentary tells the fascinating story of the beloved Broadway show and film and explain the reasons for their ongoing and universal success. Featuring Topol and Itzhak Perlman, among many others, this is a joyous celebration of a true Jewish classic.

 

The Jewish Enquirer

(Gary Sinyor, UK, 2019)

World Premiere

Part Curb Your Enthusiasm part Alan Partridge, new British TV comedy The Jewish Enquirer follows the life of 40-something Paul Green, an investigative journalist at the fourth biggest Jewish publication in the UK, who takes his job – as well as his neurosis and pet peeves – very seriously.

Jojo Rabbit

 

 

 

 

(Taika Waititi, Germany/USA, 2019)

N/A

Directed by cult filmmaker Taika Waititi (Jewish on his mother’s side, while his father is Maori), this World War II satire follows Jojo, a lonely German boy whose imaginary friend is an idiotic Adolf Hitler (Waititi, in a boisterous performance). A keen (if slightly incompetent) member of the Hitler Youth, Jojo's world view is turned upside down when he discovers his single mother (Scarlett Johansson) is hiding a young Jewish girl in their attic. Also starring Oscar-winner Sam Rockwell and Rebel Wilson, and daringly confronting nationalism and racism, Jojo Rabbit  is as hilariously sharp as  The Producers  and as sentimental as  Life is Beautiful.

 

King Bibi

(Dan Shadur, Israel, 2018)

N/A

Based solely on archive footage,

this brilliantly revealing documentary attempts to explain Benjamin Netanyahu’s continuing popularity through his carefully controlled and crafted public

appearances.

The King of Börek

(Orit Ofir Ronnell, Israel, 2018)

UK Premiere

Family intrigue and bad business decisions notwithstanding, The King of Börek is a mouthwatering ode to the delights of a fresh, warm bourekas.

The Last Resort

(Kareem

Tabsch + Dennis Scholl, USA, 2018)

UK Premiere

With the help of a treasure trove of pictures taken by the late photographer Andy Sweet, The Last Resort tells two interwoven

stories – of the iconic city of Miami, and of the life and untimely death of the local photographer who captured it and its people so beautifully.

Last Stop Coney Island: The Life and Photography of Harold Feinstein

(Andy Dunn, UK , 2018)

N/A

This British-produced documentary delves into the depths of Feinstein’s body of work, which is strongly characterised by his love of people, and life.

Leona

(Isaac Cherem, Mexico, 2018)

UK Premiere

Ariela, a twenty-something Jewish artist in Mexico City falls for non-Jewish Ivan. Struggling with her family’s disapproval, Ariela is torn between the man she loves and the community she can’t leave behind. A moving and tender debut feature about self-discovery.

 

Lieber-Man

(Nurit Kedar, Israel, 2019)

N/A

This absorbing documentary charts the former Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman’s

meteoric rise to the highest echelons of the Israeli establishment, and his success at changing it beyond recognition.

 

The Lost Crown

(Avi Dabach, Israel, 2018)

UK Premiere

This gripping documentary is an attempt to find the lost pages of the oldest Hebrew Bible as well as the soul of the once unified Aleppian Jewish community.

Love in Suspenders

(Jorge Weller, Israel, 2019)

UK Premiere

When absent-minded widow Tami accidentally hits 70-year-old widower Beno with her car, the last thing on her mind is love and romance. Trying to ensure Beno will not sue her, she invites him over to her apartment. A charming romantic comedy for the young and young at heart.

Marceline. A Woman. A Century

(Cordelia Dvorák, France/Netherlands, 2018)

UK Premiere

An engaging and loving portrait of the iconic French writer and filmmaker Marceline Loridan-Ivens, who died last year aged 90.

The Mover

(Davis Simanis, Latvia, 2018)

UK Premiere

This award-winning drama recounts the true story of blue-collar worker Zanis Lipke’s epic rescue operation during the war, which saved the lives of some 40 Jews.

Ms Stern

(Anatol Schuster, Germany, 2019)

N/A

With a wonderful performance from the late Ahuva Sommerfeld, Ms Stern is a sad yet funny meditation on life, death and everything in between.

Murer: Anatomy of a Trial

(Christian Frosch, Austria/Luxemburg, 2018)

UK Premiere

This courtroom drama exposes the political motives behind one of the most scandalous cases

of miscarriage of justice in the 20th century. Known as “the Butcher of Vilnius”, Franz Murer facilitated the mass murder of Lithuanian Jews. Based on

records of court proceedings, Murer: Anatomy of a Trial is an engrossing and enraging drama.

My Polish Honeymoon

(Élise Otzenberger, France, 2018)

UK Premiere

Recently married Parisian couple Anna and Adam head off on a honeymoon to Poland, a country awash with absurdly wonderful characters, beauty and sadness. Élise Otzenberger’s debut is a delightful comedy about rediscovering roots and being Jewish today.

Of Animals and Men

(Łukasz Czajka, Poland, 2019)

UK Premiere

Two years after the release of The Zookeeper’s Wife, which portrayed Antonina and Jan Żabiński’s extraordinary rescue operation during the war, this fascinating documentary sheds new light on their story.

The Operative

(Yuval Adler, Germany/Israel/ France/USA, 2019)

N/A

Recruited by British Jew Thomas, Rachel is sent to Tehran as a Mossad agent to spy on businessman Farhad, but their subsequent affair puts their lives at risk. This suspenseful drama asks which is more powerful, service to nation or love?

The Other Story

(Avi Nesher, Israel, 2018)

N/A

Anat and her fiancé have decided to put their wild days behind them and become ultra-Orthodox. Sarai, who was raised in a religious home, joins an all-women pagan cult.  Masterfully weaving the two women’s stories together, veteran director Avi Nesher (Past Life) creates, yet again, a thrilling and enjoyable drama.

 

Picture of his Life

(Yonatan Nir + Dani Menkin, Israel/USA/Canada, 2019)

UK Premiere

Picture of His Life follows Amos Nachoum to the Arctic Ocean on his mission to reach his ultimate professional – and personal – goal, while presenting us with magnificent views of sea life.

Reborn

(Yaron Shani, Israel/Germany, 2019)

UK Premiere

The last instalment in Yaron Shani’s Love Trilogy explores Avigail’s budding friendship with Yael at the same time that her relationship with Rashi is unravelling.

 

Redemption

(Yossi Madmoni + Boaz Yehonatan Yaacov, Israel, 2018)

N/A

When Menachem, a former rock star who has become religious, hears about a new and expensive

treatment that may save his six-year-old daughter’s life, he turns to his former bandmates and asks them to go on tour one last time.

Serial (Bad) Weddings 2

(Phillippe de Chauveron, France, 2019)

N/A

Getting used to their Chinese, African, Jewish and Arab sons-in-law wasn’t easy for Catholic

Claude and Marie Verneuil, but their daughters’ happiness and grandchildren have helped. This sequel to the 2014 hit film is a hilarious comedy with a big heart.

Shut Up and Play the Piano

(Philippe Jedicke, Germany, 2018)

N/A

The son of Hungarian Jews who fled to Canada during the war, musician Jason Beck, better known as Chilly Gonzales, is a boundary-breaking artist.  This wild and free-spirited documentary – featuring many of his collaborators over the years, including Daft Punk, Feist, Jarvis Cocker and Peaches – perfectly captures Gonzales’ incredible energy.

Solomon & Gaenor

(Paul Morrison, UK, 1999)

N/A

Set amid the anti-Jewish riots of 1911, Solomon and Gaenor tells the story of an Orthodox-Jewish man in South Wales who falls for a local girl. Join director Paul Morrison and cast members to celebrate the 20th anniversary of this Oscar-nominated drama.

 

A Song of Peace

(Levi Zini, Israel, 2018)

UK Premiere

The historic victory of the Likud party, led by Menachem Begin, in 1977 achieved something few people believed was possible: a peace treaty with Egypt.

A Song of Peace looks back at the Israeli leader who, despite being labelled a hawk and a warmonger, was brave enough to reach for peace.

Standing Up, Falling Down

(Matt Ratner, USA, 2018)

UK Premiere

Having failed to become a successful comedian, 34-year-old Scott moves back in with his parents. He finds solace in his new friendship with Marty (Billy Crystal). Bruised by life himself, Marty teaches Scott the art of moving on in this bittersweet drama.

The State Against Mandela and the Others

(Nicholas Champeaux + Gilles Porte, France, 2019)

London Premiere

Based on 256 hours of previously inaccessible audio recordings

and featuring archival footage and animation, this documentary recounts the 1963-1964 Rivonia Trial against Nelson Mandela and eight other defendants, a

watershed moment in the longstanding fight against

Apartheid.

 

Stripped

(Yaron Shani, Israel/Germany, 2019)

UK Premiere

With remarkable performances and a complex non-linear narrative, the first instalment in Shani’s Love trilogy is an unforgettable cinematic tour de force.

Synonyms

(Nadav Lapid, Israel/France, 2019)

N/A

Holding up a mirror to both Israeli and French societies and myths, daringly provocative Synonyms – the winner of the Golden Bear at Berlinale – follows a young Israeli man, who arrives in Paris with the aim of erasing his national identity.

The Tobacconist

(Nikolaus Leytner, Austria/Germany, 2018)

N/A

17-year-old Franz takes up a job at a Viennese tobacconist shop, where he meets the renowned professor Sigmund Freud. Fascinated by his theories, Franz seeks Freud’s advice after falling in love with a dancer. This drama sensitively explores its protagonists’ longing – for the love of a woman, and for a homeland.

A Tramway in Jerusalem

(Amos Gitai, Israel/France, 2018)

UK Premiere

Celebrated Israeli director Amos Gitai’s latest film is a unique and ambitious project – an amusing

series of vignettes set on Jerusalem’s tramway reflects the city’s incredible human diversity, as well as its fragmentation and political tension.

The Unorthodox

(Eliran Malka, Israel, 2018)

N/A

Sephardi ultra-Orthodox political party Shas has dramatically changed Israel’s political landscape since it was founded in the early 1980s. Inspired by real events, The Unorthodox is a highly entertaining – and enlightening – tale about the beginning of a political revolution.

Unseen

(Matan Yair, Israel, 2019)

UK Premiere

A nuanced and sensitive film in which the line between reality and fiction is blurred to such an extent that it is almost impossible to tell them apart.

Unseen is a cinematic triumph that cements Yair’s status as one of the best Israeli filmmakers working today.

Untogether

(Emma Forrest, USA, 2018)

N/A

Real-life siblings Jemima (Girls) and Lola (Mozart in the Jungle) Kirke star in this heart-warming

and romantic dramedy as Andrea and Tara, two

British-Jewish sisters in LA who, at a moment of crisis, turn to religion and sex for solace.

Van Goghs

(Sergey Livnev, Latvia/Russia/UK, 2018)

N/A

Winner of four Russian National Film Academy Awards (Nika), Van Goghs sensitively explores the complicated relationship between Mark Ginzburg, an artist, and his oppressive father Viktor, a

famous conductor.  An exceptionally moving film about families, and how they shape our expectations from – and perceptions of – life.

What Will Become of Us?

(Steven Cantor, USA, 2019)

UK Premiere

Sir Frank Lowy arrived in Australia in 1952, haunted by the loss of his father in the Holocaust. We meet him 70 years later, on the eve of the sale of Westfield, his shopping mall empire. His story encapsulates both the destruction and rebuilding of Jewish life in the 20th century.

 

Why Do They Hate Us?

(Alexandre Amiel, France, 2017)

UK Premiere

Prompted by a series of deadly attacks in Paris in 2015 and his son’s query about why Jews were one of the targets, Alexandre Amiel, a French-Moroccan Jewish filmmaker, set out to make a trilogy of films whose aim is to trace the origins of modern xenophobia in France towards Jewish, Arab and Black communities.

 

The Wolf of Baghdad

(Carol Isaacs + The Surreal McCoy, UK, 2019)

N/A

A unique audio-visual journey through a Jewish family’s memories of their lost Iraqi homeland. Projections of The Wolf of Baghdad graphic novel will be accompanied by 3yin, an ensemble of musicians playing the repertoire of Iraq and its ancient Jewish community.

Ziva Postec, The Editor Behind the Film Shoah

(Catherine Hébert, Canada, 2018)

UK Premiere

Filmmaker Ziva Postec devoted six years of her life

to the editing of Claude Lanzmann’s monumental

documentary Shoah. Here, Postec talks about what drove her, as a young single mother, to complete such an emotionally and physically demanding project and why, when the film was finally completed, she decided to move back to her native Israel, bringing her French chapter of 25 years to a close.

 

 

 

 

 

For all UK Jewish Film Festival enquiries please contact:

 

Elizabeth Taylor: Elizabeth.taylor@premiercomms.com / +44 (0)20 7292 8396

 

Press Accreditation is now open – please email charlotte.moore@premiercomms.com if you would like to request accreditation

 

Images for Press

 

Images for press are available via:

 

All photos are copyrighted and may be used by press only for the purpose of one-time reproduction and only when including proper image credits. Unauthorized use, alteration or reproduction of logos and photos is strictly prohibited.

 

NOTES TO EDITORS

 

London Venues:

 

Cinema

Tickets

Address

JW3

Evenings and all day Sundays: £15
Matinees (excluding Sundays): £10
30 and under: £10
Lieber-man: £8.50
Special Events: £7.50
Shorts Programme: £5

341-351 Finchley Road
London NW3 6ET

Phoenix

£15
30 and under: £10
Shorts Programme: £5

52 High Road
London N2 9PJ

BFI

Film only: £25
Film + Private Reception: £75
(Tickets are limited. To book, please email rsvp@ukjewishfilm.org)

Belvedere Road
South Bank
London SE1 8XT

Bertha Doc House

£9
30 and under: £7

Curzon Bloomsbury
The Brunswick
London WC1N 1AW

Ciné Lumière

£15
30 and under: £10

17 Queensberry Place
London SW7 2DT

Everyman Belsize Park

£15
30 and under: £10

203 Haverstock Hill
London NW3 4QG

Everyman King's Cross

£15
30 and under: £10

14-18 Handyside St, Kings Cross, London N1C 4DN

Everyman Muswell Hill

£15
Circle: £12.50
30 and under £10

Fortis Green Road
London N10 3HP

Odeon South Woodford

£12.50
30 and under: £7.50

60-64 High Road,
Woodford E18 2QL

Picturehouse Central

Galas: £25
£15
30 and under: £10

Corner of Shaftesbury Avenue and Great Windmill Street
Piccadilly
London W1D 7DH

Picturehouse Crouch End

£15
30 and under: £10

165 Tottenham Ln,
London N8 9BY

Picturehouse Hackney

£15
30 and under: £10

270 Mare St, London E8 1HE

Reel Borehamwood

£12.50
30 and under: £7.50

84 Shenley Road
Borehamwood WD6 1EH

Regent Street Cinema

Documentary Gala: £20
£15
30 and under: £10

309 Regent Street
London W1B 2HW

Rio Dalston

£15
30 and under: £10

107 Kingsland High St, Dalston, London E8 2PB

 

 

UK Touring Venues:

 

Bangor Pontio

Birmingham Mailbox

Brighton Komedia

Bristol Watershed

Cambridge Arts

Cardiff Chapter

Chichester Chichester Cinema

Edinburgh Filmhouse

Exeter Picturehouse

Glasgow GFT and CCA

Inverness Eden Court

Liverpool FACT

Leeds Seven Arts 
Manchester HOME and Cineworld Didsbury

Newcastle Tyneside

Northampton Filmhouse

Norwich Cinema City

Nottingham Broadway

Oxford Phoenix

Sheffield Showroom

York City Screen

 

UK JEWISH FILM

 

The UK Jewish Film Festival is an annual film festival dedicated to British and world cinema that explores Jewish life, history and culture. It was founded in 1997 and takes place in November, in London and tours to other UK towns and cities. The festival is part of UK Jewish Film, a registered charity, which also:

 

  • Delivers film education programmes for young people exploring racism, antisemitism and interfaith issues;
  • Provides training and networking opportunities for new and emerging filmmakers through its Film Lab programme;
  • Commissions two new short films each year through its Pears Short Film Fund at UK Jewish Film;
  • Organises film festivals abroad including, since 2011, the annual Geneva International Jewish Film Festival in Switzerland.

UK Jewish Film, whose President is its founder, Judy Ironside MBE, is chaired by Jonathan Lewis. Its Chief Executive is Michael Etherton. Sir Sydney Samuelson CBE was the Festival's Honorary President from 1997 to 2005. The Festival, which was initially the Brighton Jewish Film Festival, became a national event in 2003 and was renamed the UK Jewish Film Festival. UK Jewish Film’s motivation was to promote respect and understanding about Jewish cultures worldwide. In 2015 Michael Etherton was appointed as Chief Executive of UK Jewish Film.

 

 

 

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About Editor

Chatelin Bruno
(Filmfestivals.com)

The Editor's blog


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