The Jewish Federation of Sarasota-Manatee Presents the 2017 Jewish Film Festival
The eighth annual festival features 11 extraordinary films. Featured guests include Bogdan Bialek, a Polish-Catholic journalist and psychologist and the hero of the powerful new documentary, “Bogdan’s Journey.” The festival also features a “Taste of Israel” culinary experience to accompany the film, “In Search of Israeli Cuisine.”
(Sarasota, FL) The Jewish Federation of Sarasota-Manatee has selected 11 award-winning films for its 2017 Jewish Film Festival, presented by Allegiant Private Advisors. The festival is March 12-19 at various venues in Sarasota County. (A list of films, dates, times and locations is below.) In response to last year’s unprecedented attendance, organizers have added more matinee and evening screenings at Hollywood 20. Tickets are $12 per film, except the opening night film and dessert “to-go”, which is $25. An 11-film festival pass is $125 and offers one non-reserved seat at the opening night film and dessert reception and one screening of each of the 10 remaining films. The closing night dinner, which includes a multi-course Israeli culinary adventure, is $50. Tickets can be purchased online at http://jfedsrq.org/events/jff17 or by calling 866-465-3995.
The 2017 films were selected by Roz Goldberg and Marsha Eisenberg, chairs of the Jewish Film Festival, and their screening committee members Karen Bernstein, Roberta Berson, Fran Braverman, Jack Braverman, Meredith Ernst, Barbara Horowitz, Melissa Howard, Barbara Jacob, Susan Newmark, Ronnie Riceberg, Nadia Ritter, Sally Ross, Lois Stulberg, Evans Tilles, Janet Tolbert, Frank Tucciarone and Alan Wallack. Opening Night Sponsor Party chair is Bunny Skirboll; Closing Night chair is Ronnie Riceberg; “Taste of Israel” Dinner chair is Gloria Feibus; Year Round Film Programming chair is Rosann Argenti Black; and Hedy Guttman is the Volunteer chair.
Special guests and events include the Opening Night Celebration on March 12, 7:00p.m. at the Ritz Carlton Sarasota. The guest of honor is Dr. Bogdan Bialek, a Polish-Catholic journalist and psychologist, and the hero of the powerful new documentary, “Bogdan’s Journey.” This screening is the Florida premiere of the film. Dr. Bialek and the film’s directors, Michal Jaskulski and Lawrence Loewinger, will be available for questions after the film, which recently received The Star of David Special Award at the Warsaw Jewish Film Festival. Tickets for the movie and dessert “to-go” are $25. (March 12, 7:00 p.m., at the Ritz-Carlton Sarasota, 1111 Ritz Carlton Drive, Sarasota.)
The Closing Night event on March 19 features the documentary, “In Search of Israeli Cuisine,” a gastronomical portrait of the Israeli people told through their food. In this delicious film, celebrity chef-restaurateur Michael Solomonov zigzags across Israel to savor a food revolution rooted in a centuries-old traditions. The film will be screened at 3 p.m. at Hollywood 20. A multi-course “Taste of Israel” Dinner, inspired by Chef Solomonov’s cookbook, will feature flavors from the Middle East and the Sephardic and Ashkenazic food traditions. The dinner, which includes Israeli wines, follows the film at 5:30 p.m. at Michael’s on East. Tickets are $50 per person for the dinner. (March 19, 3 p.m., at Hollywood 20, 1993 Main Street, Sarasota. Tickets for the film are $12. The “Taste of Israel” Dinner follows at 5:30 p.m. at Michael’s On East, 1212 S. East Avenue, Sarasota. Tickets are $50. Seating is first-come, first-served.
Goldberg says that audiences, “can expect to experience 11 outstanding films that explore, record, and celebrate Jewish life and experience—past and present. Each film was carefully chosen for its quality and diversity, and for its ability to excite, delight, enlighten, provoke, and/or move its viewers to tears or to laughter.” She adds that they added more screenings this year, and have scheduled most of the matinees at Hollywood 20.
Film Days and Times:
“The Kinds Words” is a quirky, wry comedy-drama about three siblings who seek to uncover the greatest secret their late mother never told them: that the man who raised them is not their biological father. Monday, March 13, 10:30 a.m.; and Tuesday, March 14, 1 p.m.; and Thursday, March 16, 1 p.m., at Hollywood 20, 1993 Main Street, Sarasota.
“Shalom Italia” A touching and humorous documentary about three Italian Jewish brothers who get together for an unforgettable family reunion in the hope of finding the mysterious cave that saved their family from being deported to the camps during WWII. Monday, March 13, 1 p.m.; Tuesday, March 14, 7 p.m.; and Wednesday, March 15, 3 p.m., at Hollywood 20, 1993 Main Street, Sarasota.
“Baba Joon” is a warm feature film about the universal conflict between the immigrant father, who treasures his culture and wants to pass it on to the next generation, and his son, who wants to forge a new path and build a new identity in a new country. Monday, March 13, 3 p.m.; Tuesday, March 14, 7 p.m.; and Wednesday, March 15, 5 p.m., at Hollywood 20, 1993 Main Street, Sarasota.
“The Last Mentsch” Poignant, funny and deeply moving, this film is a powerful narrative feature about friendship and healing. Monday, March 13, 7 p.m.; Wednesday, March 15, 7 p.m.; and Friday, March 17, 10:30 a.m., at Hollywood 20, 1993 Main Street, Sarasota.
“Moos” This charming, contemporary comedy set in Amsterdam’s Jewish community is about a young woman who has always dreamed of going to acting school, but was held back by the need to take care of her grieving father after her mother’s death. Monday, March 13, 5 p.m.; Wednesday, March 15, 7 p.m.; and Thursday, March 16, 3 p.m., at Hollywood 20, 1993 Main Street, Sarasota.
“The People VS. Fritz Bauer” Based on real people and events, this powerful and engrossing feature film is the story of the man who had a secret hand in bringing high-ranking Nazi criminal Adolf Eichmann to justice. Monday, March 13, 7 p.m.; Tuesday, March 14, 5 p.m.; and Wednesday, March 15, 2017, 10:30am at Hollywood 20, 1993 Main Street, Sarasota.
“Fire Birds” A humorous, yet melancholy feature about a down-on-his-luck Israeli detective who must unlock the secrets of three spry Holocaust survivors to solve a vexing crime—a murder mystery that enticingly entwines past and present. Tuesday, March 14, 10:30 a.m.; Wednesday, March 15, 7 p.m.; and Friday, March 17, 1 p.m., at Hollywood 20, 1993 Main Street, Sarasota.
“Bogdan’s Journey” This deeply moving documentary tells the unique story of Dr. Bogdan Bialek’s dedicated pursuit of a terrible truth that had been buried for 60 years—the merciless attack on 120 Holocaust survivors who had sought shelter in Kielce, Poland, in 1946 –and the role of the townspeople in perpetrating this vicious atrocity, the last Jewish pogrom in Europe. Tuesday, March 14, 3 p.m.; and Wednesday, March 15, 5 p.m., at Hollywood 20, 1993 Main Street, Sarasota.
“Dirty Wolves” Inspired by true events, “Dirty Wolves” is a gripping feature that explores a little-known chapter of WWII history. In Spain’s rural Galicia region in 1944, with the support of the Franco regime, Nazi forces have taken over a tungsten mine, using political prisoners and slave laborers to mine the precious element the Nazis need for manufacturing weapons. Tuesday, March 14, 5 p.m.; Thursday, March 16, 7 p.m.; Friday, March 17, 3 p.m., at Hollywood 20, 1993 Main Street, Sarasota.
“A Trekkie Celebration: For The Love Of Spock” Adam Nimoy, son of the late Jewish actor Leonard Nimoy, has directed this film, a lighthearted look at the man behind Spock’s pointy ears. The film includes entertaining clips and interviews with fans and actors from the original and current incarnations of Star Trek; it also examines the rocky father/son relationship that existed between Adam and Leonard. This special event is a tribute to Leonard Nimoy; attendees are encouraged to dress in their favorite Trekkie costumes, but you can certainly come without one! Tuesday, March 14, 7 p.m., at Beatrice Friedman Theater, Jewish Federation campus, 580 McIntosh Road, Sarasota; and Wednesday, March 15, 1 p.m.; and Thursday, March 16, 10:30 a.m., at Hollywood 20, 1993 Main Street, Sarasota.
“In Search of Israeli Cuisine” A gastronomic documentary portrait of the Israeli people told through their food. Celebrity chef-restaurateur Michael Solomonov zigzags across Israel to savor a food revolution rooted in centuries-old traditions. Thursday, March 16, 5 p.m.; and Sunday, March 19, 3 p.m., at Hollywood 20, 1993 Main Street, Sarasota.
About The Jewish Federation of Sarasota-Manatee
The Jewish Federation of Sarasota-Manatee is a not-for-profit organization whose mission is to strengthen Jewish life and identity in our community, provide for Jewish people in need, and promote support for Israel. For more information, call 941-371-4546 or visit www.jfedsrq.org.