10th Annual JCC Rockland International Jewish Film Festival April 4-28th – Rockland County, NY

A Bottle In the Gaza Sea, one of 18 exquisite art films to be screened in the 10th Annual JCC Rockland Jewish Film Festival
A Bottle In the Gaza Sea, one of 18 exquisite art films to be screened in the 10th Annual JCC Rockland Jewish Film Festival

You don’t have to be Jewish to love Jewish food, so why should it be any different for Jewish films? That’s exactly the point of the 10TH ANNUAL JCC ROCKLAND INTERNATIONAL JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL which kicks off tonight with a talk and screening of Koch at the AMC Theater at Palisade Center. The film festival will screen 18 films in 24 days from nine countries to premiere in four venues and include talks from guest filmmakers and speakers.

What makes a film Jewish? The festival has 18 star-studded answers with an eclectic slate of first-run dramatic features, comedies, and power-packed documentaries to amaze, inspire and entertain movie lovers. The JCC Rockland International Jewish Film Festival is presented by JCC Rockland and sponsored by Rockland, with broad support from a cross-section of businesses, corporations, media, foundations, organizations and individuals. It is Co-Chaired by Micki Leader and Evan Kuperman. The films have been curated by Leader, who is both knowledgeable and passionate about spotlighting award-winning, new releases that have the power to mobilize, stimulate and provoke and inspire while being completely relatable to audiences of the teen years on up. A number of the films in the line up are foreign language art films with English subtitles appropriate for a minimum 6th grade reading level, Leader suggests. “These are important films capturing life through the Jewish lens,” Leader says. While some will make it to art houses, all are worth viewing for the experience of the artistry alone.

Film synopses, times and venues are as follows:

20 Million Minutes
Wednesday, April 10 @ 2:30 & 7:30pm, JCC Rockland/West Nyack, NY
7:30pm showing free for teens
Directed and Produced by Joe Allen
Guest Speakers: Joe Allen & Ankie Spitzer
USA, 2013; 90 min; English; Documentary
Sponsored by The Koenig Family

20 Million Minutes” unreels a classic David vs. Goliath tale about what happens when a small Jewish community center in Rockland County, N.Y. pits itself against the International Olympic Committee. It follows JCC Rockland’s quest for a minute of silence at the opening ceremony of 2012 London Olympics in memory of the 11 Israelis murdered in 1972 at the Munich games.
Partnering with surviving family members, the JCC brought worldwide attention to this seemingly lost cause. Over two years, organizers rally support through an online petition, resulting worldwide government and media attention that culminates in a last ditch meeting with IOC President Jacques Rogge.

The JCC did not succeed in gaining a minute of silence, but “20 Million Minutes” shows how it succeeded at something grander — making sure the world remembered.

A Bottle in the Gaza Sea
Saturday, April 13 @ 8:30pm, AMC Theatre/Palisades Center Mall
Tuesday, April 23 @ 2:30pm, JCC Rockland/West Nyack, NY
Directed by Thierry Binisti
Guest Speaker: TBA
France, Israel, Canada, 2011, 99 Min
Hebrew, Arabic, French with English Subtitle, Drama
Sponsored by Simona & Jerry Chazen

Tai is a 17 year old Israeli girl. Naim is a 20 year old Palestinian boy. She lives in Jerusalem. He lives in Gaza. Only 60 miles separate them, but how many bombings, check-points, sleepless nights and bloodstained days stand between them? Although their two countries are involved in a vicious war of sorts, these members of the younger generation refuse to give up hope. They must endure an explosive situation that is not of their choosing at an age where young people are falling in love and taking their place in adult life. Naim picks up a bottle thrown into the sea and finds Tai’s letter. He emails a response, and their correspondence nurtures what little hope is left in them. The ‘privilege’ of youth has lost its meaning where daily lives involve bombings and inspections. When all attempts seem in vain, their efforts to communicate and understand reflect a last hope that their relationship might give them the strength to confront this harsh reality, and thereby ever so slightly change it.

Dorfman in Love
Saturday, April 6 @ 8:30pm, AMC Theatre/Palisades Center Mall
Directed by Brad Leong
Guest Speaker: Wendy Kout, Screenwriter & Producer
United States, 2012, 92 Min
English, Comedy, Romance
Sponsored by Active International, Bonnie & Alan Elkin, Ellen & Arthur Wagner: Micki & Jim Leader and Leader & Berkon, LLP

An antic, romantic comedy about 27 year old Deb Dorfman, who is uprooted from the safety and beige comfort of the suburban San Fernando Valley and caught up in the kaleidoscopic whirlwind of a newly revitalized downtown L.A -not an easy transition for her. In five short days she begins to understand she’s more than an enabling sister and daughter but a real person entitled to her own space and feelings. You’ll never be able to look at Elliot Gould the same way again. He’s great as a truly loving father who still has the potential to grow and enjoy life.

Fill the Void
Wednesday, April 17 @ 7:30pm, AMC Theatre/Palisades Center Mall
Directed by Rama Burshtein
Guest Speaker: David Schwartz, Chief Curator,
Museum of the Moving Image
Israel, 2012, 90 Min
Hebrew with subtitles, Drama
Sponsored by Paramount Country Club

Fill the Void tells the story of an Orthodox Hassidic family from Tel Aviv. Eighteen-year-old Shira is the youngest daughter of the family. She is about to be married off to a promising young man of the same age and background. It is a dream-come-true, and Shira feels prepared and excited. On Purim, her twenty-eight-year-old sister, Esther, dies while giving birth to her first child. The pain and grief that overwhelm the family postpone Shira’s promised match. Everything changes when an offer is proposed to match Yochay – the late Esther’s husband – to a widow from Belgium. When the girls’ mother finds out that Yochay may leave the country with her only grandchild, she proposes a match between Shira and the widower. Shira will have to choose between her heart’s wish and her family duty as declaring her independence is not an option in Tel Aviv’s ultra-Orthodox Hasidic community, where religious law, tradition and the rabbi’s word are absolute.

Free Men
Thursday, April 11 @ 7:30pm, AMC Theatre/Palisades Center Mall
Directed by Ismaël Ferroukhi
Guest Speaker: Stephen Schaefer, Film Critic
France, 2011, 110 Min
French with subtitles, Drama
Sponsored by Institute for Advanced Rehab at Friedwald Center

In German-occupied Paris 1942, a young unemployed Algerian named Younes earns his living as a black marketeer. Arrested by the French police but given a chance to avoid jail, Younes agrees to spy on the Paris Mosque. The police suspect the Mosque authorities, including its rector Ben Ghabrit, of aiding Muslim Resistance agents and helping North African Jews by giving them false certificates In the Mosque, Younes meets Algerian-born singer Salim Halali. Touched by his voice and personality, he becomes friends with him, discovering soon afterwards that he is Jewish. Despite the risks, Younes puts an end to his collaboration with the police. A friendship is born between Younes and Salim, which develops as events unfold. Anti-Jewish laws and German repression don’t prevent Salim from continuing his activities as a singer. But the net gradually tightens around him. One evening, Salim is arrested by the Gestapo who suspect him of hiding his Jewish identity. Faced with this barbarity, immigrant worker Younes, who has no political education, gradually turns into a freedom activist.

Guest Speaker: Stephen Schaefer
Stephen Schaefer is a longtime film critic and entertainment writer for TheBoston Herald who also hosts and produces the internet weekly interview show on Art International Radio, “Beyond the Subtitles” at http://www.artonair.org. He is a frequent contributor to Variety, the showbusiness daily, and covers film festivals in Berlin and Toronto. He is also the author of “Marla’s Truth, The Autobiography of Marla Del Marr as told to Stephen Schaefer,” a spoof of the Hollywood celebrity autobiography.

Hava Nagila, the film
Hava Nagila, the film

Hava Nagila
Sunday, April 21 @ 7:00pm, Lafayette Theatre/Suffern, NY
Directed by Roberta Grossman
Guest Speaker: TBA
United States, 2012, 73 Min
English, Documentary
Sponsored by Crowne Plaza, Suffern

It’s to music what the bagel is to food – a Jewish staple that has transcended its origins and become a worldwide hit. Bob Dylan sang it. Elvis, too. And that’s only the beginning when it comes to Hava Nagila. Follow the infectious party song on its fascinating journey from the shtetls of Eastern Europe to the cul-de‐sacs of America in this hilarious and surprisingly deep film. Featuring interviews with Harry Belafonte, Connie Francis, Glen Campbell, Leonard Nimoy, Regina Spektor and more, Hava Nagila (The Movie) takes viewers from Ukraine and Israel to the Catskills, Greenwich Village, Hollywood – and even Bollywood – using the song as a springboard to explore Jewish history and identity and to spotlight the cross-cultural connections that can only be achieved through music.

Hitler’s Children
Tuesday, April 9 @ 7:30pm, AMC Theatre/Palisades Center Mall
Directed by Chanoch Zeevi
Guest Speaker: Professor Stuart Liebman, Professor Emeritus of History & Theory of Cinema Queens College
USA/Germany/Israel, 2012, 82 Min
English, Documentary
Sponsored by Hillel of Rockland; Holocaust Museum & Study Center

Their family names alone evoke horror: Himmler, Frank, Goering, Hoess. Hitler’s Children is a film about the descendents of the most powerful figures in the Nazi regime: men and women who were left a legacy that permanently associates them with one of the greatest crimes in history. For more then sixty years, they have lived in the shadows, trying to rebuild their lives without the constant reminders of what their fathers’ and grandfathers’ once did. In “Hitler’s Children” they discuss the delicate balance they have reached as they negotiate between the natural admiration that children have toward their parents and their innate revulsion of their parents’ crimes. How can they protect their families, even as they pass their name down to future generations? And how do they relate to the other side, the victims for whom their very names stir memories of revulsion and terror that cannot be repressed?

Guest Speaker: Stuart Liebman
Stuart Liebman is Professor Emreritus of the History and Theory of Cinema at Queens College’s Department of Media Studies, as well as at the Ph.D. Programs of Art History and Theater at the CUNY Graduate Center. His research focuses on two principal areas: the intersections of the cinema with modernism in the arts, and the representation of history in films. He is the editor of Claude Lanzmann’s Shoah: Key Essays (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007), among many other publications on early French cinema, American avant-garde cinema, Soviet cinema, films about the Holocaust, and post-World War II German cinema. He is currently at work on a book about representation of the Holocaust in world cinema between 1944 and 1956. He has lectured widely in both Europe and abroad, and in 2006 he was named an “Academy Film Scholar” by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in Los Angeles. He has served as a member of the Advisory Board for the critical journal October and is a former member of the Board of Trustees of Anthology Film Archives in New York City.

Koch, the film
Koch, the film

Koch
Thursday, April 4 @ 7:30pm, AMC Theatre/Palisades Center Mall
Directed by Neil Barsky
Guest Speakers: Neil Barsky, Vince Monte & Adam Lipson
United States, 2012, 95 mins
English, Documentary
Sponsored by Town of Ramapo, Christopher P. St. Lawrence, Supervisor

Former Mayor Ed Koch is the quintessential New Yorker. Still ferocious, charismatic, and hilariously blunt, the now 88-year-old Koch ruled New York from 1978 to 1989—a down-and-dirty decade of grit, graffiti, near-bankruptcy and rampant crime. First-time filmmaker (and former Wall Street Journal reporter) Neil Barsky has crafted an intimate and revealing portrait of this intensely private man, his legacy as a political titan, and the town he helped transform. The tumult of his three terms included a fiercely competitive 1977 election; an infamous 1980 transit strike; the burgeoning AIDS epidemic; landmark housing renewal initiatives; and an irreparable municipal corruption scandal. Through candid interviews and rare archival footage, Koch thrillingly chronicles the personal and political toll of running the world’s most wondrous city in a time of upheaval and reinvention.

Kol Nidre
Thursday, April 18 @ 1:00pm, JCC Rockland/West Nyack, NY
Directed by Joseph Seiden
Guest Speaker: Allen Lewis Rickman
USA, 1939, 88 Min
Yiddish with subtitles, Drama
Sponsored by FountainView at College Road

Like many shund (low budget, over the top) Yiddish dramas, Kol Nidre is an inventive pastiche of themes and styles. It combines family drama and the romantic triangle of Jenny, Joseph, and Jacob with songs and cantorial music. The film opened at the Clinton Theater on New York’s Lower East Side on September 7, 1939, two weeks before Yom Kippur (when the prayer Kol Nidre is sung) and one week after the Nazi invasion of Poland. Kol Nidre marks the on-screen reunion of Leon Liebgold and Lili Liliana, the husband and wife Warsaw actors famous for their roles as the young lovers in 1937’s The Dybbuk. Also featured are the comedienne Yetta Zwerling, Motl the Operator star Chaim Tauber, and popular entertainer and cantor Leibele Waldman. Long lost, Kol Nidre has been digitally restored by The National Center for Jewish Film with 490 new English subtitles, using the sole surviving 35mm nitrate print acquired from the family of director Joseph Seiden.

Guest Speaker: Allen Lewis Rickman, Yiddish theater historian
Allen Lewis Rickman is an actor, writer, and director, whose credits include the Coen brothers’ Oscar-nominated A Serious Man, You Don’t Know Jack with Al Pacino, and a recurring role on Boardwalk Empire. He co-adapted and directed the Drama Desk-nominated Yiddish Pirates of Penzance, and has acted extensively Off-Broadway and in Yiddish theatre. His plays have been produced in France, Denmark, Spain, Luxembourg, and Sweden, and his revue The Essence: A Yiddish Theater Dim Sum will be published in the anthology Yiddishkeit (out this fall from Abrams).

Lore, an exquisite coming-of-age film set in the days following liberation in Germany
Lore, an exquisite coming-of-age film set in the days following liberation in Germany

Lore
Sunday, April 28 @ 7:00pm, Lafayette Theatre/Suffern, NY
Directed by Cate Shortland
Guest Speaker: Stephen Schaefer, Film Critic
Australia, Germany, United Kingdom, 2012, 109 Min
German with subtitles, Drama
Sponsored by The Benmosche Family

Director Cate Shortland’s adaptation of the novel The Dark Room by Rachel Seiffert is a sensual and complex story that explores the tribulations faced by the young in the aftermath of World War II. When their Nazi SS parents are taken into Allied custody, five siblings are left to fend for themselves. Teenaged Lore, the oldest, takes charge, and the children set out to join their grandmother in Hamburg, some 900 km away. Along the arduous journey, the children encounter a populace suffering from postwar denial and deprivation. For the first time they are exposed to the reality and consequences of their parents’ actions. With food hard to come by, and the journey becoming ever more dangerous, the children meet Thomas, a young Jewish survivor who helps them negotiate their way. Lore is both repulsed by and attracted to Thomas. All that she has been taught leads her to believe he is the enemy, but his industriousness, generosity and physicality prove alluring. A coming-of-age tale set against the backdrop of a changing world, Lore shows new life emerging out of darkness with great intelligence and subtlety.

Guest Speaker: Stephen Schaefer
Stephen Schaefer is a longtime film critic and entertainment writer for TheBoston Herald who also hosts and produces the internet weekly interview show on Art International Radio, “Beyond the Subtitles” at http://www.artonair.org. He is a frequent contributor to Variety, the showbusiness daily, and covers film festivals in Berlin and Toronto. He is also the author of “Marla’s Truth, The Autobiography of Marla Del Marr as told to Stephen Schaefer,” a spoof of the Hollywood celebrity autobiography.

My Australia, a film looking at Jewish identity in children
My Australia, a film looking at Jewish identity in children

My Australia
Thursday, April 18 @ 7:30pm, AMC Theatre/Palisades Center Mall
Directed by Ami Drozd
Guest Speaker:Stephen Schaefer, Film Critic
Israel, Poland, 2011, 97 min
Hebrew and Polish with subtitles
Drama
Sponsored by Birbrower & Beldock, P.C.; Rockland Diagnostic Imaging

Poland, mid 60’s. A fragmented family in a poor neighborhood. The mother, who is separated from her Polish husband, spends most of her time working to provide the basic needs for her two sons, who are 10 and 14 years old. Left to their own devices, the boys join a neighborhood gang with a strong Neo Nazi orientation. One day the gang enters a Jewish neighborhood, beating and stabbing some youngsters, and are arrested by the police. The mother succeeds in convincing the police to release her sons, but is shocked to learn about their involvement with Neo Nazis. She had always thought that she was protecting her sons by concealing her past and origins, but now she must tell them the truth: she is a Jew. A Holocaust survivor, she wanted to raise her sons as Catholic Christians, but she realizes that they cannot continue to live like this and decides to leave Poland. She takes the older boy into her confidence, but the younger son is told that they are immigrating to Australia, while the truth is that they are boarding a ship to Israel. The film explores the struggle to form an identity in a new country, while trying to build a new life in a foreign country.

Guest Speaker: Stephen Schaefer
Stephen Schaefer is a longtime film critic and entertainment writer for TheBoston Herald who also hosts and produces the internet weekly interview show on Art International Radio, “Beyond the Subtitles” at http://www.artonair.org. He is a frequent contributor to Variety, the showbusiness daily, and covers film festivals in Berlin and Toronto. He is also the author of “Marla’s Truth, The Autobiography of Marla Del Marr as told to Stephen Schaefer,” a spoof of the Hollywood celebrity autobiography.

My Dad is Baryshnikov
Sunday, April 14 @ 7:30pm, AMC Theatre/Palisades Center Mall
Directed by Dmitry Povolotsky
Guest Speaker: TBA
Russia, 2011, 88 Min
Russian with subtitles, Drama/Comedy
Sponsored by Atlantic, Tomorrow’s Office, Linda & Larry Weiss; The Majansky Family

Think of what would happen to Billy Elliot at dance school and imagine he’s Jewish, living in the Soviet Union and not a very good dancer. That’s essentially the gist of “My Dad Is Baryshnikov,” a coming-of-age movie about Boris Fishkin, who lives with his swinging single mother and attends the Bolshoi Ballet Academy in which it’s de rigueur to be a male dancer. Boris, unfortunately is too small to partner the girls properly, and his talents are not the greatest. When his mother gives him a tape of the forbidden Baryshnikov (he was persona non grata for defecting to the West), Boris is entranced and decides to emulate the ballet dancer whom he also has decided is his father. In addition to dance, Boris gets in with some black market youngsters and finds himself in a whole lot of trouble with the authorities, both at the school and with the law. A great slice of life during perestroika combined with fascinating glimpses into the training of young dancers.

Naomi
Saturday, April 20 @ 8:30pm, AMC Theatre/Palisades Center Mall
Directed by Eitan Tzur
Guest Speaker: TBA
France, Israel, 2010, 102 Min
Arabic, Russian, Hebrew with subtitles, Drama
Sponsored by The Irgang Family

How to kill the secret lover of the wife and get away with it, so that the beloved will never know – this traditional plot of Naomi is enriched by psychological elements spinning around a never evolved mother-son relation and, in the same way, a husband-wife relation where the great difference of age makes the man act like a father for the woman. Ilan Ben-Natan is a man in his sixties and a well-known professor of astrophysics at the University of Haifa. He is married to Naomi, a 28 years old, attractive book illustrator. He suspects his wife of infidelity and when he confirms her betrayal he discovers that his wife’s lover is a painter and a filmmaker, younger than him. During an argument, the scientist kills his rival. With the complicity of his 80 years old mother, Ilan buries the lover. After a series of casualties, the corpse is then found and the commissioner, an old friend of the professor, starts the police investigation. When every signs seems to lead to the discovery of the assassin, an unexpected event will call every element into question again.

Orchestra of Exiles
Tuesday, April 16 @ 7:30pm, JCC Rockland/West Nyack, NY
Directed by Josh Aronson
Guest Speakers: Josh Aronson & Dorit Straus
Germany, Palestine and elsewhere, 2012, 85 Min
English, German, Hebrew with subtitles, Documentary
Sponsored by Lillian Adler; Development Corporation for Israel/Israel Bonds; Gwen & Steve Rosenzweig

In the early 1930’s Hitler began firing Jewish musicians across Europe. Orchestra of Exiles presents the gripping story of Bronislaw Huberman, the celebrated Polish violinist who escaped the onslaught of Nazi terror in his home land and settled in Palestine, but then returned to Europe, risking his own personal safety, to rescue some of the world’s greatest musicians from the holocaust. With his colleagues and compatriots, Huberman established one of the world’s greatest orchestras, the Palestine Philharmonic, which would later become the Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra. With courage, resourcefulness and an entourage of allies including Arturo Toscanini and Albert Einstein, Huberman saved close to 1000 Jews – along with the musical heritage of Europe.

Punk Jews, a film celebrating anything Jewish counter-culture - a must-see for those wishing to appreciate the brilliant rebels and artists of our time
Punk Jews, a film celebrating anything Jewish counter-culture – a must-see for those wishing to appreciate the brilliant rebels and artists of our time

Punk Jews
Thursday, April 25 @ 7:30pm, AMC Theatre/Palisades Center Mall
Directed by Jesse Zook Mann
Guest Speakers: Evan Kleinman and Saul Sudin, filmmakers, joined by some Punk Jews
United States, 2012, 60 Min
English, Documentary
Sponsored by the Yetta Brenner Memorial Fund, endowed by Marilyn & Abraham Kleinman

Profiling Hassidic punk rockers, Yiddish street performers, African-American Jewish activists and more, Punk Jews explores an emerging movement of provocateurs and committed Jews who are asking, each in his own way, what it means to be Jewish in the 21st century. Jewish artists, activists and musicians from diverse backgrounds and communities are defying norms and expressing their Jewish identities in unconventional ways. In the process, they are challenging stereotypes and breaking down barriers. Meet Yishal, lead singer of Moshiach Oi; Radical performance group, the Sukkos Mob; the renegade Orthodox participants of Cholent; the amazing Amy Yoga Yenta; Kal Holczler, founder of Voices of Dignity; and Afrrican-American Jewish hip hop sensation Y-Love. Voices of Dignity; and African American Jewish hip hop sensation Y-Love.

Room 514
Wednesday, April 24 @ 7:30pm, AMC Theatre/Palisades Center Mall
Directed by Sharon Bar-Ziv
Guest Speaker: Rabbi Mordechai Becker
Israel, 2012, 90 Min
Hebrew, Russian with subtitles, Drama
Sponsored by Ascape Landscape & Construction, Jennifer & Stuart Chaitin and Family

The story follows an idealistic female Israeli soldier as she confronts an elite soldier with accusations of unnecessary violence against a Palestinian man in the occupied territories. The haughty officer does not take her seriously due to her gender and lower rank and but she refuses to give up. Her colleagues, including her lover, advise her to stop the case – because it is too political, too complex and too notorious. Instead, in the hope of getting justice for the victim, she digs her heels in and pursues the case. In the meantime she has the thumbscrews tightened by her lover and his intended. The minimalist set uses an interrogation room as a metaphor for contemporary Israel. An uncompromising drama that provides a raw direct look at the psyche of a generation of young Israelis shaped by the effects of ongoing conflict .

Guest Speaker: Rabbi Mordechai Becher
Rabbi Mordechai Becher, originally from Australia, is a Senior Lecturer for the Gateways Organization. He was a Senior Lecturer at Ohr Somayach, Neve Yerushalayim and Darchei Binah in Jerusalem for 15 years, was a chaplain in the Israel Defence Forces and taught in a number of Rabbinic training programs. Rabbi Becher is the co-author of After the Return, and has answered thousands of questions on the Ask-the-Rabbi website. His latest book, Gateway to Judaism, was recently published by Shaar Press. Rabbi Becher received his ordination from the Chief Rabbinate of Israel. He has lectured for the UJA, Jewish Federations, the Zionist Organization of America, Hillel and is on the speakers bureau of the Israeli Consulate in New York. He has taught in Canada, the United States, England, Israel, South Africa, Australia and Russia. He resides with his wife and 6 children in Passaic, NJ.

The Flat
Monday, April 22 @ 7:30pm, RCC Cultural Arts Center/Suffern, NY
Directed by Arnon Goldfinger
Guest Speaker: David Schwartz, Chief Curator,
Museum of the Moving Image
Germany, Israel, 2011, 97 Min
Hebrew, German, English with subtitles
Docudrama
Sponsored by Holocaust Museum & Study Center; Ilse & John Lang; Rockland Community College

At age 98, director Arnon Goldfinger’s grandmother passed away, leaving him the task of clearing out the Tel Aviv flat that she and her husband shared for decades since immigrating from Nazi Germany in the 1930s. Sifting through a dense mountain of photos, letters, files, and objects, Goldfinger documents the arduous process of making sense of a lifetime’s accumulation of possessions. In the process, he begins to uncover clues that seem to point to a greater mystery, and soon a complicated and shocking family history unfolds before his camera. What starts to take shape is the troubled and taboo history of Goldfinger’s grandparents’ lives in Germany in the tumultuous and difficult years before World War II, and the unexpected yet inevitable ethical ambiguities and repressed emotions that arise when everyday friendships suddenly cross enemy lines. In this emotionally riveting documentary, Goldfinger follows the hints his grandparents left behind to investigate long-buried family secrets and unravel the mystery of their painful past.

The Other Son, the story of two families, one Israeli the other Palestinian, who learn their sons have been switched at birth
The Other Son, the story of two families, one Israeli the other Palestinian, who learn their sons have been switched at birth

The Other Son
Saturday, April 27 @ 8:30pm, AMC Theatre/Palisades Center Mall
Directed Lorraine Levy
Guest Speaker: TBA
France, 2012, 105 Min
French with subtitles, Drama
Sponsored by Orange & Rockland Utilities

The idea of infants switched at birth, each growing up as somebody else, is an old and potent one in literature. The possibility of such a mix-up evokes both fascination and horror and raises stark, primal questions of identity. Is who you are determined by the genetic fingerprints of your biological inheritance or by the influence of your environment? These issues arise with special intensity for two families, who live on opposite sides of the Israeli-Palestinian divide. Joseph is the dreamy, artistic son of a high-ranking Israeli officer and a French-born doctor, emerging from a cozy, privileged adolescence and preparing for his own military service. A routine blood test shows that he cannot be his parents’ child. Further investigation reveals their biological child, Yassin, has been reared by an Arab on the West Bank. The lives of these two families are abruptly turned upside down, which obliges everyone to reconsider their respective identities, values and convictions.

TICKETS AND INFORMATION
The festival is being held in 4 VENUES THROUGHOUT ROCKLAND. Tickets are $10 for students/seniors and $12 for Adults and may be ordered online at www.jccrockland.org or by calling (845) 362-4400. Seating is limited, advance purchase is recommended to avoid waiting in lines. Tickets are also being sold at each venue in advance of the screenings.

Danina Italian Restaurant is offering a 20% discount for patrons who mention the film festival. The restaurant is located at 1 Lafayette Ave Suffern, NY. Its menu can be seen online at www.daninas.com. Call (845) 357-5988 for reservations.

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