As of November 18, 2015
The Al Jolson Story (NR) This movie shows the idealized career of the singer Al Jolson, a little Jewish boy who goes against the will of his father in order to be in showbiz. He becomes a star, falls in love with a non-Jewish dancer, and marries her. In the end he chooses success on the stage.
I’m Not Rappaport (PG-13) Old Nat Moyer is a talker, a philosopher, and a troublemaker with a fanciful imagination. His companion is Midge Carter, who is half-blind, but still the super of an apartment house. When he is threatened with retirement, Nat battles on his behalf. Nat also takes on his daughter, a drug dealer, and a mugger in this appealing version of a really ‘odd couple’.
The Ritchie Boys (NR) Run out of Germany by the Nazis, a small contingent of German Jewish intellectuals exacted the perfect revenge–returning to Europe as U.S. soldiers to defeat the enemy. Groundbreaking and unforgettable, THE RITCHIE BOYS is the never-before-told tale of a handful of German nationals who used their language and cultural knowledge to wage psychological warfare against the Nazis and to liberate Europe. Still sharp as octogenarians, The Ritchie Boys –a medley of hilariously unlikely soldiers–vividly recall their treacherous and heroic slog through World War II, from their training at Camp Ritchie, Maryland to the beaches of Normandy, from dark weeks spent in a German POW camp to D-Day ebullience. Now highly successful artists, businessmen, and professors, The Ritchie Boys laugh at their clumbsy fit within the U.S. military, cry at the horrors of war, and marvel at the unorthodox–but effective–forms of interrogation and subterfuge that helped them to defeat the Nazis.
The Green Prince (Rated PG-13)
“The Green Prince” (2014 release; 95 min.) is a documentary about the improbable, “too good to be true”, story of Mosab Yousef, the so-called Son of Hamas, who for over a decade worked as a spy for the Israeli security service Shin Bet, and Gonen Ben Yitzhak, his “handler” within Shin Bet. As the documentary opens, we are reminded of the historical context in the mid-90s within which all of this is taking place, and we then dive straight into the meat and bones of the documentary, namely the interviews with both of the protagonists. A fascinating movie which, once again, proves that “truth can be stranger than fiction”.
Deli Man: In Houston, Texas, third-generation deli man Ziggy Gruber has built arguably the finest delicatessen restaurant in the U.S. His story augmented by the stories of iconic delis such as Katz s, 2nd Avenue Deli, Nate n Al, Carnegie, and the Stage
embodies a tradition indelibly linked to its savory, nostalgic foods.
Amen: From the acclaimed director of Z and CAPITAL, Costa-Gavras presents a powerful and riveting account of the implementation of the Final Solution and the culpability of the Vatican in the extermination of millions in Nazi Death Camps.
Music Box: In this intense courtroom thriller, Chicago attorney Ann Talbot (Jessica Lange) agrees to defend her Hungarian immigrant father mike Laszlo (Armin Mueller-Stahl) against accusations of heinous war crimes committed 50 years earlier. As the trial unfolds, Ann probes for evidence that will not only establish his innocence, but also lay to rest her own agonizing doubts about his past. When a hospitalized witness is suddenly located in Budapest, the trial moves to her father’s homeland. Here crucial testimony plus Ann’s personal investigation lead to astonishing results.
Ida: Poland 1962. On the eve of her vows, 18-year old Anna meets her estranged aunt Wanda, a cynical Communist judge who shocks the naive Anna with a stunning revelation: Anna is Jewish and her real name is Ida. Tasked with this new identity, Ida and Wanda embark on a revelatory journey to their old family house to discover the fate of Ida’s birth parents and unearth dark secrets dating back to the Nazi occupation.
Woman in gold: Maria Altman sought to regain a world famous painting of her aunt plundered by the Nazis during World War II. She did so not just to regain what was rightfully hers, but also to obtain some measure of justice for the death, destruction, and massive art theft perpetrated by the Nazis.
Everything is a Present: The Wonder and Grace of Alice Sommer Hertz– This is the uplifting true story of the gifted pianist Alice Sommer Hertz who survived the Theresienstat concentration camp by playing classical piano concerts for Nazi dignitaries. Alice Sommer Hertz lived to the age of 110. Her story is an inspiration.
Follow Me: The Yoni Netanyahu Story- Yoni Netanyahu was a complex, passionate individual thrust into defending his country in a time of war and violence. The older brother of Benjamin Natanyahu, the current Israel Prime Minister, Yoni led the miraculous raid on Entebbe in 1976. Although almost all of the Entebbe hostages were saved, Yoni was the lone military fatality. Featuring three Israeli Prime Ministers and recently released audio from the Entebbe raid itself.
Hava Nagila (The Movie)- A documentary romp through the history, mystery and meaning of the great Jewish standard. Featuring interviews with Harry Belafonte, Leonard Nimoy and more, the film follows the ubiquitous party song on its fascinating journey from the shtetls of Eastern Europe to the kibbutzim of Palestine to the cul-de-sacs of America.
Inside Hana’s Suitcase- The delivery of a battered suitcase to Fumiko Ishioka at the Tokyo Holocaust Museum begins the true-life mystery that became the subject of Karen Levine’s best-selling book Hana’s Suitcase. The film follows Fumiko’s search to discover the details of Hana’s life, which leads to the discovery of her brother George in Toronto.
Israel: The Royal Tour- Travel editor Peter Greenberg (CBS News) takes us on magnificent tour of the Jewish homeland, Israel. The tour guide is none other than Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The viewer gets a chance to visit the land of Israel from his own home!
Jews and Baseball: An American Love Story (narrated by Dustin Hoffman)- This documentary portrays the contributions of Jewish major leaguers and the special meaning that baseball has had in the lives of American Jews. More than a film about sports, this is a story of immigration, assimilation, bigotry, heroism, the passing on of traditions, the shattering of stereotypes and, most of all, the greatest American pastime.
Nicky’s Family- An enthralling documentary that artfully tells the story of how Sir Nicholas Winton, now 104, a British stockbroker, gave up a 1938 skiing holiday to answer a friend’s request for help in Prague and didn’t stop helping until the war’s beginning stopped him. He had saved the lives of 669 children in his own personal Kindertransport.
Shanghai Ghetto- One of the most amazing and captivating survival tales of WWII, this documentary recalls the strange-but-true story of thousands of European Jews who were shut out of country after country while trying to escape Nazi persecution. Left without options or entrance visa, a beacon of hope materialized for them on the other side of the world, and in the unlikeliest of places, Japanese-controlled Shanghai.
The Case for Israel-Democracy’s Outpost- This documentary presents a vigorous case for Israel- for its basic right to exist, to protect its citizens from terrorism, and to defend its borders from hostile enemies.
The Jewish Cardinal- This is the amazing true story of Jean-Marie Lustiger, the son of Polish-Jewish immigrants, who maintained his cultural identity as a Jew even after converting to Catholicism at a young age, and later joining the priesthood.
The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg- As baseball’s first Jewish star, Hammerin’ Hank Greenberg’s career contains all the makings of a true American success story.
Unmasked: Judaophobia- the Threat to Civilization – This documentary exposes the current political assault against the State of Israel fundamentally as a war against the Jewish people and their right to self-determination.
Fill the Void- This is the story of an eighteen-year-old, Shira, who is the youngest daughter of her family. Her dreams are about to come true as she is set to be married. Unexpectedly, her sister dies while giving birth to her first child. The drama of the story reaches its peak when the girls’ mother proposes a match between Shira and the young widower. Shira will have to choose between her heart’s wish and her family duty.
Footnote- The winner of the Cannes Film Festival (Best Screenplay) is the tale of a great rivalry between a father and son, two eccentric professors, who have both dedicated their lives to work in Talmudic Studies. Each has a need for recognition in his chosen field and the day comes when father and son must look deeply inside themselves for the truth- advancement of his own career or of the others.
Hidden in Silence- Przemysl, Poland, WWII. Germany emerges victorious over the Russians and the city comes under Nazi control. The Jews are sent to the ghettos. While some stand silent, Catholic teenager, Stefania Podgorska, choose the role of a savior and sneaks 13 Jews into her attic.
Noodle (compatible only on PAL –DVD players- Hebrew with English subtitles) This film was a beloved entry in the Jewish Federation of NEPA’s Jewish Film Festival. It tells the heartwarming story of an Israeli stewardess, Miri, whose personal life as a war widow leaves her without much joy. Everything changes for Miri when her Oriental housemaid disappears one day leaving her with her young Oriental child!
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas- Based on the best- selling novel, this movie is unforgettable. Set during WWII, the movie introduces us to Bruno, an innocent eight-year-old, ignores his mother and sets of on an adventure in the woods. Soon he meets a young boy and a surprising friendship develops.
The Concert- Andrei Filipov was prodigy- at 20 he was the celebrated conductior for Russia’s renowned Bolshoi Orchestra. Thirty years later, still at the Bolshoi, he works as a janitor. Ousted during the communist era when he refused to fire the Jewish members of the orchestra, a broken Andrei now cleans the auditorium where he once performed in front of thousands.
The Debt- In 1966, three Mossad agents were assigned to track down a feared Nazi war criminal hiding in East Berlin, a mission accomplished at great risk and personal cost- or was it?
The Other Son- As he is preparing to join the Israeli army for his national service, Joseph discovers he is not his parents’ biological son and that he was inadvertently switched at birth with Yacine, the son of a Palestinian family from the West Bank. This revelation turns the lives of these two families upside-down, forcing them to reassess their respective identities, their values and beliefs.
To borrow any of these films for home or synagogue use, please contact Dassy at 961-2300 x2 or firstname.lastname@example.org.