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Film

Image Of Victory

Avi Nesher’s captivating movie, Image of Victory, takes viewers back 74 years to a long-forgotten but important battle during Israel’s War of Independence. It will be screened at this year’s Toronto Jewish Film Festival, which runs from June 9-26. On June 7, 1948, Egypt won its first armed engagement with the newly-formed state of Israel […]

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Film

Plan A Resurrects A Chilling Footnote In Jewish History

Vengeance was the name of the game for Holocaust survivor Abba Kovner. In postwar Germany, he and a few fellow survivors sought to kill six million Germans to avenge the deaths of six million Jews. The Israeli brothers Doron and Yoav Paz have recreated this little-known incident in their dark and sober movie, Plan A. It […]

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Film

Blue Box: Untangling A Complex Past

Israeli filmmaker Michal Weits untangles her grandfather’s complex past as a state builder in Blue Box, a compelling 82-minute documentary that will be screened at this year’s Toronto Jewish Film Festival, which runs from June 9-26. Joseph Weitz, the father of Israel’s forests, was the director of both the Jewish National Fund’s Department of Lands […]

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Film

Four Winters: Jewish Partisans In Eastern Europe

By Julia Mintz’s estimation, more than 25,000 Jewish partisans fought German troops in the forests of Eastern Europe during World War II. Usually attached to networks of Russian and Polish  partisan groups, they came from all walks of life from Poland and Lithuania. Her stirring documentary, Four Winters: A Story of Jewish Partisan Resistance and […]

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Film

The Levys of Monticello

Monticello is one of the finest public buildings in America. Thomas Jefferson, the third president of the United States and the author of the Declaration Independence, lived there periodically until his death in 1826. When he died, he was deeply in debt, compelling his daughter, Martha, to sell the estate, which had fallen into disrepair. […]

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Film

The Wedding Day

Wojciech Smarzowski’s unusually strong and emotive Polish-language movie, The Wedding Day, merges past and present, gliding over a ragged landscape torn by ethnocentrism and violence and healed by humanity. It will be screened at this year’s Toronto Jewish Film Festival, which runs online and in-person from June 9-26. Shifting seamlessly between modern-day Soviet-and German-occupied Poland, it […]

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Film

Tantura Breaks The Silence

During Israel’s 1948 War of Independence, hundreds of thousands of Palestinian Arabs were displaced from their homes and fields in a catastrophe they refer to as the Nakba. Displacements occurred in towns such as Jaffa, Lod and Ramle. Alon Schwartz’s eye-opening movie, Tantura, documents what happened in the Arab fishing village of Tantura, which was […]

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Film

Children Of The Sun

Left- wing Labor Zionists in Palestine and Israel attempted to build an egalitarian and socialist society within their web of cooperative settlements. The children they raised in this cloistered milieu from the 1920s to the 1970s were expected to transmit their parents’ and grandparents’ hopes and dreams to future generations, but this would not be […]

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Film

Tacheles — The Heart Of The Matter

Holocaust memory lies at the core of Tacheles — The Heart of the Matter, a documentary film by Jana Matthes and Andrea Schramm. It will be presented in Toronto by the 19th annual Human Rights Watch Canada Film Festival on Sunday, May 29 at 3 p.m. at the Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema. From May 30 to […]

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Film

The People Of The Book

Jews in the Diaspora have successfully adopted to local environments while keeping faith with Jewish traditions. This pattern of accommodation looms large in The People of the Book, a 28-minute documentary by Felix Lazarus which focuses on three towns in the Canadian province of Ontario — Sudbury, Sault Ste. Marie and North Bay. Released in 1973, […]