Israel Film Festival

Jewish Federation’s Israel Film Festival brings some of Israel’s most entertaining cinema to venues throughout Bergen County. Our goal is to enrich the American view of Israeli society, life and culture and to strengthen community and personal connections to Israel.

November 2 – 19

Event Committee

Suzette Diamond, Chair

Lauri Bader, Nancy Eichenbaum, Susan Erdfarb, Joelle Halperin, Etti Inbal, Donna Kissler, Joan Krieger, Lynn Karpo-Lantz, Sue Ann Levin, Gail Loewenstein,
Jo Resnick Rosen, Ava Silverstein, Marian Salamon, Wendy Zuckerberg

Thank You to Our Sponsors

Boiling Springs Savings Bank
Marian and Jon Salamon

My Hero Brother

Thursday, November 2 @ 7:30 pm

This remarkable documentary follows a group of young Israeli adults with Down Syndrome as they set out on an arduous mountain climbing trek in the Himalayas, each accompanied by their brother or sister. The journey, with its formidable physical and emotional challenges, tests and strengthens these sibling relationships. Touching and poignant, the film reveals insights into the complexities, challenges and rewards that can be part of relationships where one sibling has special needs.

Warner Theater, 190 East Ridgewood Avenue, Ridgewood

78 Minutes, Hebrew with Subtitles

Q&A with Yonatan Nir, Director

An Israeli Love Story

Tuesday, November 7 @ 7:30 pm

Based on the true story of theater director and actress Pnina Gary, this passionate story of love and independence is set in pre-state Palestine. Eli and Margalit are torn between their love for one another and where they see their own futures in the Jewish state. In the budding theater world of Tel Aviv and the kibbutzim, Margalit finds her place in the spotlight, while Eli is drawn deeper into the armed struggle for Jewish independence from the British.
93 Minutes, Hebrew with Subtitles

PLUS

Double Feature

The Little Dictator

Yossi Kleinmann, a dull history professor and expert on the political leaders of totalitarian regimes, feels unappreciated by both his students and his domineering wife. One weekend, at the 90th birthday party of his wife’s grandmother, a Holocaust survivor, Yossi finds himself in a surreal situation that forces him to face up to himself and his family.
28 Minutes, Hebrew with Subtitles

Teaneck Cinemas, 503 Cedar Lane, Teaneck

The Women’s Balcony

Wednesday, November 8 @ 7:30 pm

Israel’s #1 film of the year! A close knit community is plunged into conflict after the women’s balcony in the synagogue collapses. A new, charismatic rabbi arrives, promising to rebuild the synagogue. When he starts to impose ultra-Orthodox practices on the women, friendships are tested and a rift is created between the men and women. This warm, poignant portrait presents a community struggling to balance religious protocol with progressive values. Nominated for five Israeli Academy Awards.

Wayne YMCA, 1 Pike Drive, Wayne

96 Minutes, Hebrew with subtitles

The Wedding Plan

Monday, November 13 @ 7:30 pm

After her fiancé calls off their wedding a month before the ceremony, an ultra-Orthodox woman decides to keep the wedding date, leaving it to fate to provide a suitable groom. Unwilling to return to lonely single life, Michal embarks on an exhaustive search for a spouse, enlisting different matchmakers and enduring a series of horrible blind dates. As the day of her wedding grows closer and without the presence of Mr. Right, the jilted bride-to-be puts everything on the line to find happiness. Winner of three Israeli Academy Awards.

Teaneck Cinemas, 503 Cedar Lane, Teaneck

110 Minutes, Hebrew with Subtitles

My Hero Brother

Tuesday, November 14 @ 7:30 pm

This remarkable documentary follows a group of young Israeli adults with Down Syndrome as they set out on an arduous mountain climbing trek in the Himalayas, each accompanied by their brother or sister. The journey, with its formidable physical and emotional challenges, tests and strengthens these sibling relationships. Touching and poignant, the film reveals insights into the complexities, challenges and rewards that can be part of relationships where one sibling has special needs.

United Synagogue of Hoboken, 115 Park Avenue, Hoboken

78 Minutes, Hebrew with Subtitles

Mr. Predictable

Wednesday, November 15 @ 7:30 pm

Adi has never had a backbone. Everyone takes advantage of him – his needy mother, entitled boss, cold wife and spoiled son. After a computer error causes Adi to believe that he doesn’t have long to live, his predictable life now seems like a tragic waste of time. A chance encounter with Natalya – a stunning, free-spirit – soon turns into a crash course on how to live life to the fullest. Now he has to choose between a steady, dependable existence and a chance at genuine happiness.

Warner Theatre, 190 East Ridgewood Avenue, Ridgewood

103 Minutes, Hebrew with Subtitles

Our Father

Thursday, November 16 @ 7:30 pm

In this gritty gangster drama, Ovadia, a tough but honorable man, works as a doorman at a Tel Aviv nightclub. Life at home with his wife Rachel is strained by their fruitless efforts to conceive a child. Desperate to save his marriage, the cash strapped Ovadia goes to work for a small time mobster, collecting debts as a way to pay for his wife’s expensive fertility treatments. His eventual attempt to break free from a life of violent crime will test his loyalities and force a difficult choice: protect his family or betray his friends. Winner of three Israeli Academy Awards.

Edgewater Multiplex Cinemas, 339 River Road, Edgewater

105 Minutes, Hebrew with Subtitles | Warning: Contains scenes of violence

Past Life

Sunday, November 19 @ 7:30 pm

In this fascinating and profoundly moving new film from one of Israel’s most acclaimed directors, Avi Nesher, two Israeli sisters investigate rumors of their father’s actions during WWII. Inspired by a true story, Past Life tracks the daring 1977 trans-European odyssey of the sisters as they try to unravel the disturbing mystery that has shadowed their whole lives. This emotional drama confronts the haunting power of the past and the healing power of truth and forgiveness.

Kaplen JCC on the Palisades, 411 East Clinton Avenue, Tenafly

102 Minutes, Hebrew, German, Polish with Subtitles

Q&A with David Milch, Producer

General Information

  • All ticket sales are final. No exchanges. No returns.
  • Paper ticket not required – check in at the door
  • General seating for all films
  • Doors open at 6:30 pm
  • Tickets for weekday shows available for purchase until noon the day of the screening
  • Tickets for Sunday shows available for purchase until noon the Friday before the screening
  • Limited tickets available at the door
  • All programs subject to change

This program has been made possible in part by a grant administered by the Bergen County Division of Historic and Cultural Affairs from funds granted by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts.