The 15th Annual New Jersey Jewish Film Festival (NJJFF) hosted by JCC Metrowest in West Orange will take place from March 15 to March 29. This year’s festival will feature a total of 23 new films from six countries, including 12 New Jersey premieres.
“Each year, we bring the community new, highly-acclaimed films with a Jewish twist,” said Joni Cohen, Chair of the NJJFF. “These fantastic films, by Academy-award winning filmmakers and new rising stars, offer us insight into the rich diversity of global Jewish experience and the common bonds that tie us together.”
The festival opens Sunday, March 15 at 7:30 pm at the Maurice Levin Theatre, JCC MetroWest with the northeast US premiere of Chagall-Malevich. The period drama is about the uneasy relationship between two artistic geniuses as the October revolution sweeps across Russia, and includes many works by both artists. Lead actress, Kristina Schneidermann, will participate in a post-film conversation, followed by the NJJFF Opening Night Celebration. Ms. Schneidermann, who hails from Austria, speaks five languages and is visiting the festival from LA where she is working on a new project.
The lineup this year includes feature films, documentaries, shorts on a wide range of subjects, and the first three episodes of an award-winning Israeli TV drama, Shtisel. The feature films range from narrative to historical drama, thrillers, and romantic comedies, including topics such as the Jews in Greece (Magic Men, dramedy); the threats facing modern-day Jews in France (24 Days, thriller) and coming of age as a Palestinian Christian in the West Bank (Villa Touma, drama). Documentaries range in subject from Soviet Jewry, shifting demographics, fashion, the Holocaust an mental illness to Israelis living on the Gaza border (Border Living); race, Jewish identity and family secrets (Little White Lie—which the Montclair Film Festival just screened with MFEE); biopics of Jewish luminaries (The Outrageous Sophie Tucker) and the fascinating true story of the creation of the Israeli Air Force in 1948 by volunteer American veterans (Above and Beyond).
In addition to the films, the NJJFF will present many guests speakers for post-film conversation and host some special events and workshops, including Youth and Teen screenings, Doc Day, Sunday Shorts and Senior Matinees.
For a complete 15th Annual New Jersey Jewish Film Festival schedule, please visit the website.