When aspiring filmmaker David (Brandon Polansky) is mandated by a judge to attend a social program at the Jewish Community Center, he is sure of one thing: he doesn’t belong there. But when he’s assigned to visit the Brooklyn Bridge with the vivacious Sarah (Samantha Elisofon), sparks fly and his convictions are tested. Their budding relationship must weather Sarah’s romantic past, David’s judgmental mother (Jessica Walter), and their own pre-conceptions of what love is supposed to look like. Under the guise of an off-kilter New York romantic comedy, Keep the Change does something quite radical in casting actors with autism to play characters with autism, offering a refreshingly honest portrait of a community seldom depicted on the big screen. Rarely has a romcom felt so deep and poignant. Thoroughly charming and quite funny, the film’s warmth and candor brings growth and transformation to the characters, and ultimately, to us.
What do the most ravishingly beautiful actress of the 1930s and 40s and the inventor whose concepts were the basis of cell phone and bluetooth technology have in common? They are both Hedy Lamarr, the glamour icon whose ravishing visage was the inspiration for Snow White and Cat Woman and a technological trailblazer who perfected a secure radio guidance system for Allied torpedoes during WWII.
Weaving interviews and clips with never-before-heard audio tapes of Hedy speaking on the record about her incredible life—from her beginnings as an Austrian Jewish emigre to her scandalous nude scene in the 1933 film Ecstasy to her glittering Hollywood life to her ground-breaking, but completely uncredited inventions to her latter years when she became a recluse, impoverished and almost forgotten—Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story brings to light the story of an unusual and accomplished woman, spurned as too beautiful to be smart, but a role model to this day.
In the award-winning HANNAH ARENDT, the sublime Barbara Sukowa reteams with director Margarethe von Trotta (Vision,Rosa Luxemburg) for a brilliant new biopic of the influential German-Jewish philosopher and political theorist. Arendt’s reporting on the 1961 trial of ex-Nazi Adolf Eichmann in The New Yorker—controversial both for her portrayal of Eichmannand the Jewish councils—introduced her now-famous concept of the “Banality of Evil.” Using footage from the actual Eichmann trial and weaving a narrative that spans three countries, von Trotta beautifully turns the often invisible passion for thought into immersive, dramatic cinema.
Orna, (Liron Ben Shlush) is the mother of three young children with a husband struggling to start his own restaurant. To help support her family Orna returns to the workplace, landing a job with a former army superior, Benny (Menashe Noy) who is now a successful real estate developer. While Orna embraces her new position and tries to balance its demands with her home life, she begins to experience escalating sexual harassment from her boss. Her rapid rise through the ranks and her increasing financial success seem to parallel a pattern of predatory behavior which ultimately brings her career and marital relationship to the brink. This timely and devastating story is expertly told by long time feminist filmmaker Michal Aviad.
Grierson award-winning director Iris Zaki enters the heart of Tekoa, an Israeli settlement in the West-Bank,and sits down to talk to the locals. Though fearful at first of the left-wing invader, settlers from various backgrounds gradually open up to her. Their honest, surprising and sometimes funny conversations offer a fresh take on Israeli reality from both sides of the Green Line.
During the 1920s, Café Nagler was the hottest place in Berlin. The director embarks on a journey to find out what’s left of the legendary café owned by her family. After discovering that family myths don’t always match historical facts, she’ll re-create her family’s past together with her Berlin peers.
Tamar Ariel grew up in a religious home in a moshav in southern Israel. Encouraged to follow her dreams, she did two years of voluntary National Service and then joined the IDF Air Force, where she served as the first-ever Jewish Orthodox combat navigator. In 2014, wishing for new experiences after her military service, she traveled to Nepal. She reached the peak of the Annapurna mountain range with a group of Israeli and international hikers, only to encounter an unexpected snow storm. Tamar and her companions found themselves in a life and death struggle against the elements.
A smash hit in Israel and winner of the Best Narrative Feature Award at the Tribeca Film Festival, Zero Motivation is a unique, sharply observed, sometimes dark and often hilarious portrait of everyday life for a unit of young, female soldiers in a remote Israeli desert outpost. Playing out like M*A*S*H meets Orange is the New Black, Talya Lavie’s brilliant debut details the power struggles of three women with different agendas and very little to do.
Pencil-pushers in the Human Resources Office, best friends Zohar (Dana Ivgy) and Daffi (Nelly Tagar) spend their time playing video games, singing pop songs, jousting with stationery and dreaming of Tel Aviv. The indolent twosome are watched over by their aspiring senior officer, Rama (Shani Klein), who dreams of a higher position and a significant military career, but with a platoon of unskilled, idle, female soldiers without any drive under her charge, her ambitions for promotion are constantly thwarted. With shifts of tone that go from slapstick to satiric to horrifying with fluid ease with a superb supporting cast of characters.
Based on the novel by Rachel Eytan. Summer 1944. 13 year old Maya is placed in a foster home. The director of the home falls in love with her, as Maya reminds him of a tortured love affair from his past. Maya, however, falls in love with a member of the underground who is engaged to one of the workers at the home. This complicated romance enthralls.