5th Annual Rehoboth Beach Jewish Film Festival

March 11th, 2020 - 4:00 pm to March 15th, 2020 - 6:00 pm

The Rehoboth Beach Film Society is pleased to partner with Seaside Jewish Community in presenting the fifth annual Rehoboth Beach Jewish Film Festival. The mission of this event is to deepen awareness of Jewish cultures and experiences, and to explore community differences and commonalities through the art of film.

In this time of rising anti-Semitic violence in the world, it has never been more important for the Rehoboth Beach Jewish Film Festival to celebrate the culture and history of the Jewish people with our community. The twelve films presented over five days (March 11-15) are the most diverse, hopeful and inspiring yet, while also not turning away from the tragedies of Jewish history. Many of the films deal with finding commonalities, whether within oneself, in a relationship or amongst historically adversarial communities. Others deal with the moral imperative of remembering, of keeping the past alive, no matter how hard time and the bigotry of others try to erase it. Universal themes of love and family are also explored through a distinctly Jewish lens. Though things may look grim, there is much hope to be found in this year’s selection of films, and we invite you to come experience it with your friends and family.

To respect the Jewish Sabbath, Seaside Jewish Community is not hosting the films on Friday night or Saturday afternoon.

Anne Frank Parallel Stories
Wednesday, March 11 at 7 pm - This screening is hosted by Sara and Jeffrey Rosen.
Tuesday,  March 17 at 7 pm     BONUS SCREENING

This important event cleverly re-tells the story of Anne Frank’s life through the pages of her diary, guided by Academy-Award® winning actress Helen Mirren. We hear too the stories of five women who, as young girls, were deported to concentration camps but survived the Holocaust.  [2016, Israel, 90 min, in Hebrew and Arabic with English subtitles, Not Rated].

Abe
Thursday, March 12 at 1 pm - This screening is hosted by Marty Rosensweig.

Finding one’s identity is a challenge everyone faces, but few have the pressure that 12-year-old Abe feels as the son of an Israeli mother and Palestinian father. Though his parents have raised him in a secular household, both sets of grandparents insist he chooses between being Jewish or Muslim. Thankfully, Abe has a passion for food that allows him some escape from the escalating family tensions that are a reflection of the generations-old conflict between Israel and Palestine. While exploring Brooklyn to discover new foods, he meets Chico, a Brazilian chef who believes “mixing flavors can bring people together.” Chico teaches Abe not only the inner workings of a professional kitchen but how to blend flavors with delicious results. Abe uses his newfound cooking skills to plan a Thanksgiving feast that celebrates his diverse heritage, with the hope of unifying his family. [2018, Brazil, in English, Arabic and Portuguese, with English subtitles, 85 min, Not Rated].

Crescendo
Thursday, March 12 at 4:00 PM - This screening is hosted by Helen Gates

When world-famous conductor Eduard Sporck (Peter Simonischek, “Toni Erdmann”) accepts the job to create an Israeli-Palestinian youth orchestra, he is quickly drawn into a tempest of unsolvable problems. Having grown up in a state of war, suppression or constant risk of terrorist attacks, the young musicians from both sides are far from able to form a team. Loosely inspired by Daniel Barenboim’s West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, Academy-Award® nominated director Dror Zahavi (“Alexander Penn”, “Everything for my Father”) directs this gripping drama as a constantly growing ‘crescendo’, raising the tension and conflicts until the last frame. [2019, Germany, in German with English subtitles, 106 min, Not Rated].

The Keeper
Thursday, March 12 at 7 pm - This screening is hosted by Laura Glenn and Marilyn Kates.

“The Keeper” tells the incredible true story of Bert Trautmann (David Kross), a German soldier and prisoner of war, who, against a backdrop of British post-war protest and prejudice, becomes the starting goalkeeper for Manchester City. His signing causes outrage to thousands of fans, many of them Jewish. But Bert receives some unexpected support: Rabbi Alexander Altmann, a refugee from World War II. Bert’s love for Margaret (Freya Mavor), an Englishwoman, carries him through and he wins over even his harshest critics by winning the 1956 FA Cup Final, despite playing with a broken neck. But fate will soon twist the knife for Bert and Margaret, when their love and loyalty to each other is put to the ultimate test. [2019, UK, 113 min, Not Rated].

Witness Theater
Friday, March 13 at 12:30 pm - This screening is hosted by Cindi and Stanley Silverblatt.

Aron is 88 years old, Eazek is 94 and Claudine is 89. Over seventy years ago, although they lost their entire families, they survived the Holocaust and resettled in New York City. Now they are sharing their stories in a unique program led by a drama therapist with high-school students in Brooklyn. The hope is that this sharing will sensitize the students and give some closure to the adult survivors after all these years. The Witness Theater workshop they participate in culminates in the performance of a play based on Survivor stories.

Scenes from the program’s weekly creative workshops and final performance are interspersed with scenes of the survivors at home, all within the structure of a dramatic arc that traces survivors’ lives before, during and after the war. The result is a story that, told in the present, imparts insights into the effect of the past on multiple generations of Jews, while also illustrating the power and importance of transmitting experience from one generation to the next. [2018, US, 74 min, Not Rated].

Incitement
Friday, March 13 at 3:30 pm - This screening is hosted by Carole and Matthew Ash.

In 1995, Yitzhak Rabin, the Prime Minister of Israel, was assassinated by an ultranationalist, right-wing Zionist who opposed the leader's signing of the Oslo Accords. Israeli-American filmmaker Yaron Zilberman (“A Late Quartet”) sets out, with a critical eye, to expose — through the eyes of Rabin's assassin, Yigal Amir — the motivations that led to Rabin's death. Set in the year preceding the incident, Zilberman's meticulously crafted period piece is embedded in the world of Amir (portrayed with unsettling stoicism by Yehuda Nahari Halevi), moving from his family home to his failed relationships to his radicalization on illegal settlements. “Incitement” is a gripping work of cinema that concretely writes into history a moment on which many would rather not reflect. [2019, Israel, in Hebrew with English subtitles, 123 min, Not Rated].

Shoelaces   
Friday, March 13 at 7 pm - This screening is hosted by Fran Saltzman in memory of Mike Saltzman.

"Shoelaces" tells the story of a complicated relationship between an aging father and the special-needs son he abandoned as a young boy. Reuben's kidneys are failing and his son Gadi wants to donate one of his own to save his father's life. Gadi feels he finally has a chance to do something meaningful; to become a man and stand on his own. Through the film's portrayal of a relationship full of love, rejection and codependency, it manages to shed light on and question the importance of the connections we make in our lifetimes, and how we never know who will be there for us at the end. [2018, Israel, in Hebrew with English subtitles, 90 minutes, Not Rated].

The Tobacconist
Saturday, March 14 at 1 pm - This screening is hosted by Sara and Jeffrey Rosen.

Seventeen-year-old Franz journeys to Vienna to apprentice at a tobacco shop. There he meets Sigmund Freud (Bruno Ganz), a regular customer, and over time the two very different men form a singular friendship. When Franz falls desperately in love with the music-hall dancer Anezka, he seeks advice from the renowned psychoanalyst, who admits that the female sex is as big a mystery to him as it is to Franz. As political and social conditions in Austria dramatically worsen with the Nazis' arrival in Vienna, Franz, Freud, and Anezka are swept into the maelstrom of events. Each has a big decision to make: to stay or to flee? [2018, Austria/Germany, in Czech and German with English subtitles, 113 min, Not Rated].

Golda’s Balcony, The Film
Saturday, March 16 at 4 pm - This screening is hosted by George Beckerman in memory of Mary Helms.

A rare, multi-camera shoot from the play’s original run was recently unearthed and assembled into a new but absolutely riveting motion picture. Tovah Feldshuh recreates her award-winning performance as Golda Meir —and, stunningly, 45 other characters, including Ben-Gurion, Kissinger, Dayan, King Abdullah, Holocaust victims, Israeli Generals and citizens, and dozens of other Mideast figures—in “Golda's Balcony, the Film”. Winner of 20 "Audience Favorite Awards" at all 20 of its competitive festivals to date, including Boston, L.A., Philadelphia, Tel Aviv, Pittsburgh, Dallas, Northern Virginia and others. [2019, US, 86 minutes, Not Rated].

Holy Silence 
Saturday, March 16 at 7:30 pm - This screening is hosted by Marsha Davis.
Tue March 17 4 pm BONUS SCREENING - This screening is hosted by Joan Churchill and Thomas Klein.

As World War II looms on the horizon, Pope Pius XI calls on a humble American priest to help him challenge the evils of Nazism and anti-Semitism. But death intervenes, and a new pope, Pius XII, carries out a very different response to Hitler and the Holocaust.

“Holy Silence” tells the dramatic story of the Vatican's actions – and inactions – during World War II and the years leading up to it. Featuring Oscar®-nominated actor David Strathairn as the voice of President Franklin Roosevelt, the film focuses on the little known story of Americans – from priests to presidents – who worked behind the scenes in hopes of persuading the Holy See to be a strong moral voice against Hitler and fascism. [2019, US, 72 min, Not Rated].

Director Steve Pressman (author and director of “50 Children: The Rescue Mission of Mr. and Mrs. Kraus”) will be present at both screenings to introduce the film and facilitate a post-screening audience discussion.

Who Will Write Our History
Sunday, March 17 at 12 pm - This screening is hosted by Hank Smith, in memory of “my late wife Debi Smith, who was my personal ‘Seeker of Justice’ and ‘Keeper of Memories’.”

In November 1940, days after the Nazis sealed 450,000 Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto, a secret band of journalists, scholars and community leaders decided to fight back. Led by historian Emanuel Ringelblum and known by the code name Oyneg Shabes, this clandestine group vowed to defeat Nazi lies and propaganda with pen and paper, not guns or fists. “Who Will Write Our History” mixes the writings of the Oyneg Shabes archive with new interviews, rarely seen footage and stunning dramatizations to transport us inside the Ghetto and the lives of these courageous resistance fighters. [2018, Poland/US, in Polish and Yiddish with English subtitles, 97 min, Not Rated].

Love in Suspenders 
Sunday, March 17 at 3 pm - Hosted by Hank Smith, “for all single people who still believe there’s someone we’re supposed to meet and be with...”

An encounter between two people with such different personalities, such as Tammy and Beno, has to result in a nightmare…but love has its own rules.

 

So it happens that Tammy, a 64-year-old widow who constantly deals with the memory of her late husband, meets Beno, a 70-year-old sarcastic lone-wolf widower--and they fall in love.

From their first unfortunate encounter, when Tammy hits Beno with her car, until they unite in front of the altar, Tammy and Beno experience all sorts of emotional, funny struggles. They get closer, break up, get back together and fight again, until ultimately their love wins out. [2019, Israel, in Hebrew with English subtitles, 102 minutes].

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Admission is $12 per screening. Customers are encouraged to purchase tickets online. If seats are available, tickets can be purchased at the theater, starting 30 minutes prior to each screening. Please note that tickets are non-refundable and there will be no exchanges.

The mission of the RBFS is promoting cinematic arts and providing education and cultural enrichment for our community. The Film Society sponsors ongoing screenings, special events, and the Rehoboth Beach Independent Film Festival (Nov 5 – 15, 2020). Having met all the requirements for best practices in nonprofit management, the Rehoboth Beach Film Society is accredited by the Standards for Excellence Institute®. This organization is supported, in part, by a grant from the Delaware Division of the Arts, a state agency, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts. The Division promotes Delaware arts events on www.DelawareScene.com. For more information on this series, other events, or to become a member, visit the Rehoboth Beach Film Society website at www.rehobothfilm.com, or call 302-645-9095.

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