Blue and white, all day and night

The 24/7 Israeli Cinema channel.

May 1, 2014 17:31
3 minute read.
The Wonders

The Wonders. (photo credit: Courtesy PR)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


The YES cable network has long had a tradition of celebrating Independence Day with 24 hours of Israeli movie classics on all its movie channels, and this year is no exception. But this year, that’s only the beginning. This Independence Day, YES is starting an Israeli Cinema channel, which will broadcast on Channel 6.

The channel kicks off with premiere television screenings of two of the most popular Israeli films in recent years.

On May 5 at 10 p.m. you can see Avi Nesher’s The Wonders. This is the fourth movie Nesher has made since returning to Israel after making genre movies in Hollywood for 15 years, and it may be his best film ever. The Wonders has been described as Lewis Carroll meets Carol Reed. It’s a film noir dramedy set in Jerusalem, about an artist/bartender (Ori Hizkiya) who stumbles onto a mystery when he discovers that an ultra-Orthodox cult leader is being held against his will in an apartment across the way. A hardboiled detective (Adir Miller), a mysterious redhead (Yuval Scharf), and his own drawings, which come to life (via animation), all play a part in the story.

It’s fitting that the channel should be inaugurated with the TV premiere of an Avi Nesher movie because his debut film, The Troupe (Ha Lahaka), one of the most beloved Israeli films of all time, has long been a staple of YES’s Independence Day film programming.

If you’ve got the stomach for a great deal of gore, tune in on May 6 at 10 p.m. to see Big Bad Wolves by Navot Papushado and Aharon Keshales, the duo who made the cult favorite Rabies (2010). Big Bad Wolves has won many prizes all over the world, but its greatest accolade came from Quentin Tarantino, who saw the movie at the Busan International Film Festival last fall, and said, “Not only is this the best film in Busan, it’s the best film of the year.”

It features Tzahi Grad as a father whose daughter was raped and murdered and who is determined to extract a confession from the main suspect in her killing, a milquetoast played by Rotem Keinan.

It’s interesting that neither of these two films was even nominated for the Ophir Best Picture Award, the prize of the Israel Academy of Film and Television, yet they have received so much acclaim at home and abroad. Like the American Oscars, the Ophirs tend to go to movies that are fairly conventional.

In addition to these two premieres, the channel will feature the best of Israeli cinema of the past 15 years. Some of these films have been aired before but usually only for a single screening. If you’ve missed any of these wonderful films, which have turned Israeli cinema into a major force on the world movie scene, you can catch up with them now. Among those I recommend are Eytan Fox’s Yossi & Jagger (which took the top acting prize for Ohad Knoller’s performance at the Tribeca Film Festival); Eran Kolirin’s The Band’s Visit, which won more than 40 international prizes, among them the Grand Prix at the Tokyo International Film Festival; Joseph Cedar’s two Oscar-nominated films, Footnote and Beaufort; Avi Nesher’s Turn Left at the End of the World, one of the most financially successful Israeli movies of all time; and many, many more.

Almost all the Israeli films released in the past year will be screened, including Yuval Adler’s Bethlehem, which won this year’s Ophir Award, about a Shin Bet officer and his Palestinian informant, and Johnathan Gurfinkel’s controversial S#x Acts, about a lonely teenage girl who will do anything to be popular.

Older classics will also be screened, including Assi Dayan’s 1976 comedy Halfon Hill Doesn’t Answer.

There will be a special theme every month, and in May it will Cannes, since the Cannes Festival takes place in May, so Israeli films that were shown at Cannes and won prizes there will be shown.

Among them are Footnote (which won the Best Screenplay Award) and Scandar Copti and Yaron Shani’s Ajami, which won a Special Mention in the Camera d’Or section.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Sarah Silverman
August 26, 2014
Jewish women take home gold at 2014 Emmys