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The cast of The New Black lounges around on a couch in various poses. Text reads, "The New Black. Season 2."

The New Black (Season 2)

A new season of the award-winning Israeli series, following the exploits of four students who dropped out of their prestigious Yeshiva and are searching for their place in the world. In this season they’ll open a yeshiva on a central, non-religious street in Jerusalem – to the chagrin of the neighbors – and not only that, but right across the street from a co-ed secular seminary. Disagreements and differences will crop up soon enough, but there’ll also be moments of harmony and bridge-building between the two worlds.

Courtesy of ChaiFlicks.
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The Tenth Man poster

The Tenth Man

Award-winning director Daniel Burman returns with The Tenth Man, a well-observed comedy that wrestles with notions of identity, home and the intricacies of the father son relationship. After years away, Ariel returns to Buenos Aires seeking to reconnect with his father Usher, who has founded a charity foundation in Once, the city’s bustling Jewish district where Ariel spent his youth. In the process of trying to meet his father and getting entangled in his charitable commitments, Ariel also reconnects with his own Jewish roots.

Keep the Change poster

Keep the Change

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.

Happy Times poster

Happy Times

A boorish Israeli-American couple plan a Sabbath dinner party for a group of fellow ex-pat friends and family in their Hollywood Hills mansion. What could possibly go wrong? Well, start with a deadly mix of alcohol, add inflated egos, some inappropriate lust and top with raging jealousy and the result is of cauldron of murderous mayhem. A shot gun, garden sheers, kitchen knives and even a garbage disposal are used as weapons of choice as these deranged guests turn on each other in director Michael (“Out in the Dark”) Mayer’s outrageous and bloody comedy. Think “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf” meets “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.”

Synonyms poster

Synonyms

Winner of the Golden Bear at Berlinale, the latest from Nadav Lapid (The Kindergarten Teacher) features a dynamic lead performance from newcomer Tom Mercier, whose feral intensity practically bursts out of the frame. Mercier plays Yoav, a disaffected young Israeli who flees Tel Aviv for Paris to start a new life. Desperate to erase his origins, Yoav sees becoming French as his only hope for salvation. Step one is to replace his language. From now on, he will not utter a single word of Hebrew and his dictionary becomes his constant companion. His work at the Israeli embassy is a burden, but studying for his naturalization test also has its pitfalls. And the young French couple he befriends has some rather strange ideas about how to help him. Based on writer-director Nadav Lapid’s own experiences, Synonyms explores the challenges of putting down roots in a new place. Yoav’s attempts to find himself awaken past demons and open up an existential abyss in this tragicomic puzzle that wisely knows how to keep its secrets.

Kiss Me Kosher Still

Kiss Me Kosher

A subversive love story about clashing cultures and families, Kiss Me Kosher is a romantic misadventure crossing all borders. When two generations of Israeli women fall for a German woman and a Palestinian man, chaos follows. What happens when lovers don’t fit together but do belong together?

Honeymood Still

Honeymood

From the breakthrough director of Zero Motivation comes Honeymood, a romantic comedy set over the course of one night in Jerusalem. A bride and groom arrive at a lavish hotel suite after their wedding. What should have been a romantic night together turns into a fight that develops into a dazed urban journey, making them confront past loves, repressed doubts, and the lives they have left behind.

Cupcakes poster

Cupcakes

A group of friends in a Tel Aviv suburb get together to watch Universong, a Eurovision-like television song contest. They’d all like to forget the stress of their daily lives. Yael is a former beauty queen who is unfulfilled by her job as a corporate lawyer; Dana is a stressed-out aide to a cabinet minister and timidly tries to please her traditional father; Anat , has a successful bakery but an unsuccessful marriage; Keren is a shy blogger; Efrat is a frustrated singer- songwriter whose career has stalled; and Ofer is a nursery-school teacher who is upset that his boyfriend, a spokes-model for his family’s famous brand of hummus, is still in the closet and won’t publicly acknowledge their romance.
When the night of the Universong final rolls around, they gather to watch and are depressed by the lifelessness of the Israeli entry, a parody of many recent offerings, a flashy, grating song about “amour.” After they realize that Anat is distraught over the crisis in her marriage, they compose a song to cheer her up. As a lark, Ofer enters their cellphone video of it in next year’s contest, and it becomes Israel’s entry.

The Kind Words poster

The Kind Words

In the wake of their mother’s death, Dorona (Rotem Zissman-Cohen) and her brothers Netanel (Roy Assaf) and Shai (Assaf Ben-Shimon) stumble across some unexpected intrigue regarding her past — namely the revelation that her husband, the man who raised them, is not their biological father. The ensuing search for the mysterious Muslim man who sired them takes them from Israel to France. The film truly belongs to Dorona, a young woman longing for a love so idealized, so notional, that she can’t see the full heart of the man in front of her: her own husband. Briskly paced and threaded throughout with wry humor, Zarhin’s film asks us to confront our own ideas around identity and walking the emotional tightrope between lies and truth.

Paris-Manhattan poster

Paris-Manhattan

Alice is a Parisian pharmacist who has a fixation on Woody Allen and his films. She has a huge portrait of him hanging in her bedroom, with which she tends to converse, seeking his wise counsel about life. She even hands out DVDs of his films to her customers as medicine for their ailments. Her parents have a sense of urgency for her to find a man, but none can match Woody Allen, not even the alarm specialist Victor who services the pharmacy. But there is one thing a man could do to impress her – introduce her to Woody Allen.