The Jewish Federation of Eastern Connecticut (JFEC) 27th Annual Jewish FilmFest of Eastern CT (formerly known as the International Film Festival), will open on Thursday, May 6 and run through Sunday, June 27.
Except for “The Spy Behind Home Plate,” (movie link available from 12 p.m. on .May 6 to Sunday, May 9, end time TBD), all movie links will be available to view from Thursdays at 12:01 a.m. through Sundays at 11:59 pm.
the festival features award-winning, international dramas and documentaries, including highly acclaimed Israeli films. Select screenings will be followed by Q&As with special guest speakers – including filmmakers, producers, and actors.
Admission if FREE (donations are welcome. Registration is required. For more information or to register, visit JFEC.com.
“Love in Suspenders”
(Israel; Hebrew with English subtitles, 2019, 79 minutes)
When absent-minded widow Tami accidentally hits 70-year-old widower Beno with her car, the last thing on her mind is love and romance. Israeli Oscar-winner Shlomo Bar-Aba (MJFF 2016 film “Hill Start”) gives a heartwarming performance as Tami’s late husband, who refuses to let her go in this charming romantic comedy for the young and young at heart.
“A Starry Sky Above the Roman Ghetto
(Italy: Italian with English subtitles, 2020, 100 minutes)
The discovery of a puzzling photograph sparks a student to probe the history of Rome’s Jewish ghetto and the fate of a little girl, in this Italian teen drama interlacing past and present.
Guess speaker: Director Giulio Base, Sunday, May 16, 1:00 pm
“Kiss Me Kosher”
(Israel, Germany: Arabic, German, and Hebrew with English subtitles, 2019, 105 minutes)
Sparks fly when two families from wildly different cultural backgrounds collide to plan a same-sex wedding, in this screwball romantic comedy that crosses all borders.
Guest speakers: Director Shirel Peleg and producer Christine Günther, Sunday, May 23, 7:30 pm
“The Shabbos Goy”
Short; (USA, 2019, 7 minutes)
A “Shabbos goy” is a non-Jew who performs certain tasks which religious law prohibits a Jew from doing on the Sabbath. In this delightful comedic short God literally forbids Chana to turn off her vibrator gone rogue, so she sets out on a quest to find someone who can.
“They Aint Ready for Me”
(USA, 2018, 195 minutes)
A feature-length documentary about Tamar Manasseh, the African American mother and rabbinical student who is leading the fight against senseless killings on the south side of Chicago. Tamar, who is both authentically Jewish and authentically Black, brings an understanding of both communities, even as she struggles for acceptance in the Jewish world.
Guest speakers: Director Brad Rothschild and Tamar Manasseh, Sunday, June 6, 7:30 p.m.
“Here We Are”
(Israel: Hebrew with English subtitles, 2020, 92 minutes)
The story of devoted father, Aharon, who has spent his life raising is son, Uri, who is autistic. Now a young adult, it might be time for Uri to live in a specialized home. While on their way to the institution, Aharon decides to run away with his son and hits the road, knowing that Uri is not ready for this separation. Or is it, in fact, his father who is not ready?
“The Spy Behind Home Plate”
(USA, 2018, 80 minutes)
The first feature-length documentary to tell the real story of Morris “Moe” Berg, the enigmatic and brilliant Jewish baseball player turned spy. Berg caught and fielded in the major leagues during baseball’s Golden Age in the 1920s and 1930s. But very few people know that Berg also worked for the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), spying in Europe and playing a prominent role in America’s efforts to undermine the German atomic bomb program during WWII.
Guest speaker: Producer/Director/Writer Aviva Kempner, Sunday, June 20, 7:30 pm
(Germany: German with English subtitles, 2020, 106 minutes)
A renowned conductor assembles an orchestra of Israeli and Palestinian youth, only to be drawn into a tempest of distrust and discord. For personal reasons, maestro Eduardo Sporck agrees to arrange a symbolic concert for a Middle East peace summit in Italy. But as auditions begin in Tel Aviv, conflict between the factions flares up, and it takes all the conductor’s skills to get his musicians in harmony. An impressive cast of Israeli and Palestinian non-actors, lends authenticity to this powerful drama, loosely inspired by Daniel Barenboim’s West-Eastern Divan Orchestra.
Guest speaker: Screenwriter Stephen Glantz, Sunday, June 27, 7:30 pm.