Honolulu’s Jewish Film Festival
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You still have time to catch some great films at the Jewish Film Festival in Honolulu:
(Tickets to the Jewish Film Festival can be purchased at the Honolulu Academy of Arts prior to each movie.)
The Eighth Annual Temple Emanu-El Kirk Cashmere Jewish Film Festival
Movies, Dates and Times:
The Little Traitor: Country: Israel/USA (2007; 88 minutes) – Language: English/Hebrew with subtitles. Based on the novel “Panther in the Basement” by world-renowned author, Amos Oz, the movie takes place in 1947, just a few months before Israel becomes a state. Proffy Liebowitz, a militant yet sensitive eleven year old wants nothing more than for the occupying British to get out of his land. Proffy and his two friends spend most of their time plotting to terrorize and/or blow up the British until one night while he is out after curfew, Proffy is seized by Sergeant Dunlop. Instead of arresting him Sergeant Dunlop deposits him back home. As a friendship between them develops, Proffy is confronted by his previous assumptions and newly learned lessons. Stars Alred Molina as Sergeant Dunlop.
Awards: 2008 Audience Award for Best Feature Film – Palm Beach International Film Festival, Los Angeles Jewish Film Festival, and Atlanta Jewish Film Festival.
Dates/Times of Showing: Sat. 3/6 – 7:30; Tues, 3/9 – 1:00, 4:00, 7:30. Lynn Roth, the screenwriter, director, and producer of The Little Traitor will be in Honolulu to present her film on opening night and lead a discussion following the film.
[I saw this and assure you it was wonderful. Great acting and historic setting. Drew]
Inside Hana’s Suitcase: Country: Canada, Czech Republic, Japan (2009; 88 minutes) — Language: English, Czech, Japanese with English subtitles. “Inside Hana’s Suitcase” mixes documentary and narrative techniques to tell the true story of Holocaust victim Hana Brady. The film retraces a series of coincidences that lead Tokyo school teacher Fumiko Ishioka to the suitcase that belonged to the Hana Brady. Ishioka, who is also the director of the Tokyo Holocaust Education Center, receives the suitcase with only two pieces of information on Hana: her date of birth and the fact that she was an orphan at the time of her wartime capture. Through dogged research Ishioka and her students bring Hana to life while learning important lessons of life.
Dates/Times of Showing: Sun. 3/7 – 1:00; Wed. 3/10 – 1:00, 4:00, 7:30
[I might have cut a few minutes here and there, but it is an amazing story of how some people understood the Shoah, especially for those of us interested in Jewish history, Japan, and human rights. – Drew]
A Matter of Size: Country: Israel (2009; 90 minutes) — Language: Hebrew and Japanese with English Subtitles. Herzl is an overweight, underemployed chef living with his mother in the Israeli city of Ramia. While working as a dishwasher at a Japanese restaurant, he notices his coworkers watching sumo wrestling on TV. To Herzl, sumo is a revelation, an escape from the dictatorship of diets espoused by his weight-loss group. With three hefty pals in tow, Herzl decides to pursue the sport where his size is an asset.
Awards: 2009 Winner for Best Actress, Best Supporting Actress, and Best Costume Design -Israeli Film Academy; 2009 Audience Award for Best Feature Film – Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, Czech Republic and many others.
Dates/Times of Showing: Sun. 3/7 – 4:00, 7:30; Thurs. 3/11 – 1:00, 4:00, 7:30
[I don’t know much about Sumo, but it was a heartwarming comedy. Drew]
The Lemon Tree: Country: Israel (2008; 106 minutes) — Language: Hebrew and Arabic with English subtitles. Salma Zidane is a Palestinian widow who has been living quietly on her land for decades. The new Israeli Defense Minister decides to move to his new house on the green line border between Israel and the West Bank opposite Salma’s lemon grove which is her livelihood. When the Israeli security forces declare that Salma’s trees pose a threat to the Minister’s safety and must be uprooted, Salma takes her tree-saving mission all the way to the Israeli Supreme Court. Salma’s legal and personal journey lead her deep into the complex, dark and sometimes funny chaos of the ongoing struggle in the Middle East.
Awards: 2008 Winner for Best Actress – Israeli Film Academy; 2008 Audience Award – Berlin International Film Festival.
Dates/Times of Showing: Sat. 3/13 – 7:30; Tues., 3/16 – 1:00, 4:00, 7:30. Rabbi Peter Schaktman of Temple Emanu-El will present the film and lead a discussion following the film on Saturday 3/13 at 7:30.
Beau Jest: Country: USA (2008; 98 minutes) — Language: English.
Director James Sherman adapted his own long-running play to create this breezy comedy. When Sarah Goldman, a lovely young school teacher in Chicago wants to please her parents she invents a Jewish boyfriend whom she believes will be the man of her mother’s dreams. When her parents insist on meeting the man, Sarah hires Bob, an actor, to pretend to be her “beau.” What unfolds is a comic masquerade that works flawlessly at first, but becomes harder to maintain over time. In the end, their lives and the lives of Sarah’s family are irrevocably changed.
Dates/Times of Showing: Sun. 3/14 – 1:00, 7:30; Wed. 3/17 – 1:00, 4:00, 7:30
Circumcise Me: The Comedy of Yisrael Campbell: Country: USA, Israel (2008; 48 minutes) —
“Is it hot in here, or am I the only one dressed for Poland in the 17th century?” Born Chris Campbell the son of an ex-nun and a Catholic school teacher, Yisrael Campbell converted to Judaism three times- Reform, Conservative and Orthodox. Circumcise Me is a hilarious, searching and moving story of one man’s quest for spiritual enlightenment.
Leaving the Fold: Country: Canada (2008; 52 minutes) — Language: English.
From the Hasidic enclaves of Montreal, Brooklyn and Jerusalem comestories tinged with pain and unexpected humor, as this documentary tells the story of five young people born and raised within the ultra orthodox world who no longer wish to remain in this community. They emerge from a society where decisions were made for them into a baffling secular world which offers endless choices. They learn that the answers don’t always come easily.
Dates/Times of Showing: Sun. 3/14 – 4:00; Thurs. 3/18 – 1:00, 4:00, 7:30
The film festival is named in honor of Kirk Cashmere. Kirk was an integral part of the Hawaii Jewish community. He was founder of the Hawaii Israel Independence Day Celebration, The Hawaii Jewish News and one of the founders of Jewish Community Services. In addition he was a strong proponent of Jewish Arts and was a prominent civil rights attorney who served as legal director of the ACLU and worked with the Legal Aid Society and the Life Foundation. He passed away in 2002 at the age of 47 and left a legacy of compassion and courage.
If you have not already done so, please donate to the Jewish Film Festival. Your donations are critical to support the continuation of Festival as ticket sales go directly to support the Doris Duke Theater, Honolulu Academy of Arts. Donations should be made out to Temple Emanu-El with JFF on the check. Your donation is tax deductible and greatly appreciated.
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