20th UK International Jewish Film Festival

05 Nov 2016

Will you be in London, Manchester, Glasgow, Leeds or Nottingham this November? There's over 120 screenings to choose from.

The 20th installment of the UK International Jewish Film Festival brings two weeks of screenings, panels, Q&As and other events to five cities across the UK, under the premise that Jewish and Israeli film has something to offer for the widest of audiences:

At the core of UK Jewish Film’s existence is the notion that film is universal. It crosses cultures and divides and as such has the ability to unite, engage and educate diverse audiences through the telling of cinematic stories that provide stimulating, interesting and unique views of Jewish and Israeli life and culture.

Of the 80 films in the Festival's selection, 9 are up for awards in 2 competitions: Best Feature Film and Best Debut.

While there is no issue defining 'Israeli cinema', what makes a film (otherwise) 'Jewish', is a valid question, and one that the Festival's director, Michael Etherton is aware of. In the welcome address Etherton proposed that

It is not only about Jewish ritual and life, but sometimes a Jewish sensibility and state of mind. It is our job to open up the question for debate and discussion [...]

Perhaps there's no better way than to engage with the films in order to engage with that question. In line with that, here's a sneak peek into the Festival's selection, ranging from a film-version of Philip Roth's novel in which the protagonist's Jewish identity is just an underlying feature of the narrative, to a tale of two Bedouin women struggling to change rules imposed by tradition, to the interview with Brunhilde Pomsel, who worked as the secretary of Joseph Goebbels.

Indignation | Dir. James Schamus | (USA)

Sand Storm | Dir. Elite Zexer | (France, Israel)

A German Life | Dirs. C. Krönes, O. S. Müller, R. Schrotthofer, F. Weigensamer | (Austria)

The Jews | Dir. Yvan Attal | (Belgium, France)

JEU aims at providing a platform for a pan-European exchange on Jewish life, thought and culture that extends beyond national and linguistic barriers.

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