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Film

Breaking Bread

Israeli Arab chef Nof Atamna-Ismaeel passionately believes that food is the first step toward achieving coexistence between Jews and Arabs in Israel. As she says, “There is no room for politics in the kitchen.” Personable and outgoing, she is at the center of Breaking Bread, an uplifting documentary by Beth Elise Hawk scheduled to be […]

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Film

Nobody Wants Us

September marks the 80th anniversary of a World War II incident that could have gone badly awry and cost the lives of scores of Jewish refugees fleeing Nazi persecution. On August 8, 1940, the Portuguese vessel, the SS Quanza, set sail from Lisbon en route to New York City with 362 passengers, many of whom […]

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Film

A Tramway In Jerusalem

Jerusalem’s light rail commuter line cuts sleekly through Jewish and Arab neighborhoods, bringing Jews and Arabs into close proximity whether they like it or not. Israeli filmmaker Amos Gitai uses this train as a device to draw pen portraits of everyday Israelis and to examine some of the problems that bedevil contemporary Israel. His film, […]

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Film

The Dancing Dogs Of Dombrova

Two preppy Canadians find themselves in a dreary village in Poland in the dead of winter. What are they doing there?¬†Zach Bernbaum answers the question in his quirky Canadian feature film, The Dancing Dogs of Dombrova, which is currently playing online. Night has fallen in Dombrova, and siblings Sarah and Aaron Cotler (Katherine Fogler and […]

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Film

The Burnt Orange Heresy

Duplicity, larcency, arson and homicide are the key ingredients in Giuseppe Capotond’s taut thriller, The Burnt Orange Heresy, which opens in Canadian theatres on August 7. The film, shot on location in Italy, centers around four characters whose lives intersect for better or worse: James Figueras (Claes Bang), a European art critic and author; Berenice […]

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Film

Farewell To My Country

Andrzej Krakowski was one of the victims of the antisemitic campaign that drove multitudes of Jews out of Poland in 1967 and 1968. Crudely disguised as an anti-Zionist reaction to Israel’s military victory in the Six Day War, it was primarily rooted in an ideological struggle within Poland’s ruling Communist Party that pitted Western-leaning progressives […]

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Film

Mr. Jones: A Fearless Journalist

Unless you’re very familiar with the Soviet Union and the foreign correspondents who covered it during the 1930s, Gareth Jones’ name does not ring a bell. Yet Jones, a Welsh reporter, left a lasting legacy in the annals of journalism. He was the first to produce an eye-witness account of the famine in Ukraine that […]

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Film

Israel: The Land Of The TV Series

Television arrived late in Israel. A generation of Israelis missed it altogether. David Ben-Gurion, Israel’s first prime minister, panned TV as “uncultured” and a “waste of time.” He would much rather read a book, he told an interviewer. During that austere era, some Israelis shared his view, considering TV an indulgence that could best be […]

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Film

Dayan: The First Family

Moshe Dayan, a black patch covering his left eye, was one of Israel’s most identifiable figures. An army general, a government minister and the scion of a Zionist pioneering clan, he was at once flamboyant and reserved. Dayan figures prominently in Anat Goren’s biopic, Dayan: The First Family, which will be screened online by the […]

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Film

How The Holocaust Came To TV

For millions of West Germans, it would be an evening like no other. On¬†January 22, 1979, the first episode of Holocaust, a four-part, nine-and-a-half hour American television series, was broadcast. By one estimate, half of all Germans over the age of 14 watched at least one of the episodes. Holocaust resonated with most viewers, touching […]