If you’re not catching the #LFF London Film Festival next month then fear not, only a few short weeks later will be the 17th annual UK Jewish Film Festival. This years festival will feature screenings of over 70 films and other special events across five cities – London, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool and Manchester – over the course of 19 days from 31st October 2013.
From gala premieres to documentaries about the Jewish culture, here’s a few of our highlights which look like ones not to miss!
Joe Papp in Five Acts
A riveting portrait of a transformative figure in the New York theatre scene, Joe Papp – a poor, tough, Jewish kid from Brooklyn – who created Central Park’s free Shakespeare In The Park Festival, which launched the careers of everyone from Meryl Streep to Kevin Kline, all of whom feature here.
This radical and tumultuous personality introduced colour-blind casting, nurtured emerging playwrights, fostered countercultural plays like Hair, and revolutionized commercial theatre with the Broadway smash hit A Chorus Line, as well as founding the Public Theatre.
Packed with testimonials from Christopher Walken, Martin Sheen, James Earl Jones and Meryl Streep – and framed by Kevin Kline’s exquisite monologues.
Hava Nagila (The Movie)
Featuring interviews with Harry Belafonte, Leonard Nimoy, Connie Francis, Glen Campbell, Regina Spektor and more. Hava Nagila (The Movie) is a documentary romp through the history, mystery and meaning of the great Jewish standard.
The film follows the ubiquitous party song on its fascinating journey from Ukraine and Israel to the Catskils, Hollywood and the world, using the song as a springboard to explore Jewish history and identity and to spotlight the cross-cultural connections that can only be achieved through music.
High on fun and entertainment, Hava Nagila (The Movie) is also surprisingly profound, tapping into universal themes about the importance of joy, the power of music and the resilient spirit of a people.
Funny, clever and abrasive New York comedy from a young director tipped as the next Woody Allen, starring the inimitable Brian Cox CBE.
Blumenthal is a comedy about a family in motion. The severely constipated Saul Blumenthal desperately wants to go. His brother Harold the famous playwright (whom Saul believes plagiarised his life), has just gone. Saul’s wife Cheryl fears she’s a has-been and considers cosmetic surgery whilst Ethan, the main protagonist, is on a duel-pronged journey to find a soulmate and Harold’s lifetime achievement award, as a form of recompense for his father…
Welcome to the world of American Modern Day ‘Jewrosis’!
You can book your tickets via the Film Festival website but don’t leave it too late or you’ll miss out on all of these fantastic films.