The Weinstein JCC’s annual Israeli Film Festival is dedicated to fostering an understanding of Israeli culture and access to Israel’s young but thriving film industry. The festival features films based upon various considerations such as awards or nominations, timely subject matter and input from the film community. Individual events are listed below. For more info or to buy tickets, go to: https://weinsteinjcc.org/cultural-arts/film/
In Search of Israeli Cuisine Film and Israeli Food & Wine Event
A fascinating portrait of the Israeli people told through food. Award-winning filmmaker Roger Sherman follows chef/guide Mike Solomonov of the famous Zahav in Philadelphia to fine restaurants, home kitchens, and open air markets to reveal 70+ cultures that help make Israel one of the world’s hottest food scenes. Chef Solomonov visits over 100 locations all over Israel, talking to chefs, home cooks, winemakers, cheesemakers, farmers, and more about their cultures, their heritages and what the food tells us about what it means to be Israeli.
Patrons of the Arts (Artist Level and above), join us before the film for a unique opportunity to enjoy delicious Israeli dishes and wines from the growing wine industry.
Film festival sponsored by Weinstein Properties, dinner sponsored by Lynn and Jay Schwartz
This powerful docu-drama is based on previously undiscovered audio recordings of the former pilot of the Sabena, Captain Reginald Levy. It fuses candid interviews with archive material and dramatic reenactments of the tense scenes inside the aircraft and the control tower as Captain Levy was held at gunpoint. Captain Levy (now deceased) was in command of Sabena Flight 571 from Vienna to Tel Aviv, Israel on May 8, 1972, when it was hijacked by four members from “Black September,” the armed wing of Fatah or Palestine Liberalization Organization. This film finally shares the untold story of what exactly took place on the flight throughout 30 hours of nerve-racking captivity. Therese Halsa, one of the four hijackers who was a girl of just 18 at the time, also gives her version of events, following release from a 220 year prison sentence of which she served 13 years.
Followed by a panel discussion
The Kind Words
In the wake of their mother’s death, Dorona (Rotem Zissman-Cohen) and brothers Netanel (Roy Assaf ) and Shai (Assaf Ben-Shimon) stumble across some unexpected intrigue regarding her past — namely revelations about their family. The ensuing search for truth takes them across France, accompanied by Dorona’s devoted but long-suffering husband, Ricki (Tsahi Halevi, who appeared at the Festival in 2013’s Bethlehem). Dorona and Ricki face the potential end of their marriage while her brothers grapple with how to define themselves not just as men and fathers, but also as Jewish Israelis. Briskly paced and threaded throughout with wry humor, Zarhin’s film asks us to confront our own ideas around identity and walking the emotional tightrope between lies and truth.
The Band’s Visit
The Alexandria Ceremonial Orchestra arrives in Israel to play at the opening of the Arab Cultural Center. Dressed in full regalia and observing all military police protocol, the members of the orchestra are looking forward to playing at what might be the most important venue of their careers. But it’s not just the political nature of an Arab military police band playing traditional Arab music in Israel that makes this event so important; budget cuts and many reorganizations have threatened the continued existence of the Orchestra. Faced with the heavy burden of this assignment, the stoic conductor Tewfiq is determined not to foul their excursion.
The world lost a great talent and visionary when director and actress Ronit Elkabetz died of cancer in April 2016. Through the screening of this film, we wish to remember her beauty and artistic contribution, as it was for The Band’s Visit that Ronit won her third and final Israeli Academy award in 2007.
Rabin: In His Own Words
An autobiography of sorts, told entirely in Rabin’s own voice. Through a combination of rare archival footage, home movies and private letters, his personal and professional dramas unfold before the viewer’s eyes—from his childhood as the son of a labor leader before the founding of the State of Israel, through a change of viewpoint that turned him from a farmer into an army man at some of the most critical junctures in Israeli history, through his later years during which he served as Prime Minister and made decisions that enraged a large portion of the public, until the horrific moment when his political career and life were suddenly and tragically brought to an end.
Followed by a panel discussion