Israeli films at the Jerusalem Film Festival

The festival, which begins July 26, just announced this year’s film line-up

July 2, 2018 21:08
3 minute read.
YITZHAK RABIN, Yasser Arafat and Shimon Peres in the movie ‘The Oslo Diaries,’ about the attempt to

YITZHAK RABIN, Yasser Arafat and Shimon Peres in the movie ‘The Oslo Diaries,’ about the attempt to bring peace to the Middle East through the Oslo Accords during the 1990s.. (photo credit: SAAR YAACOV)


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The 35th Jerusalem Film Festival, which will run at the Jerusalem Cinematheque from July 26 to August 5, has just announced the lineup of Israeli films that will be shown and will take part in the competitions.

The films that will be in the Haggiag Competition for Full-Length Israeli Feature Films are Keren Ben Rafael’s Virgins, the story of a rebellious teenage girl in a small seaside town, which stars Joy Rieger, who won the Best Actress Award at the Tribeca Film Festival for her role in it this year; Redemption, directed by  Joseph Madmony and Boaz Yehonatan Yacov, which stars Moshe Folkenflik as a newly observant rock star who gets his old band back together to raise money to provide medical treatment for his daughter; Tsivia Barkai-Yacov’s Red Cow, the story of a young woman who lives with her father, a messianic nationalist, in Silwan; Here and Now  by Roman Shumunov, about a new immigrant who tries to balance his music career with his family obligations; Michal Aviad’s Working Woman, about a woman working in real estate who finds her ambitions conflict with her boss’s demands; Amikam Kovner and Assaf Snir’s Echo, the story of a man who suspects his wife is cheating on him and the discoveries he makes in the process of investigating her; and Yona Rozenkier’s The Dive.

The opening-night film will also be an Israeli film: Unorthodox by Eliran Malka, a dramatization of the founding of the Shas party in Jerusalem, starring Shuli Rand.

Several documentaries will participate in the Van Leer Competition for Israeli Documentaries. These include Mor Loushy and Daniel Sivan’s The Oslo Diaries, a look behind the scenes at those peace negotiations from different perspectives. Tomar Heymann’s Jonathan Agassi Saved My Life tells the story of one of the stars of the gay porn movie world, and details his private life, including his relationship with his mother. Dan Shadur’s King Bibi examines the prime minister’s career through four decades of media appearances. Toklomati, by Gad Aisen, David Ofek and Shir Ben tells the story of an African soccer player who was expelled from Israel and who returns for his son’s bar mitzva. Ramy A. Katz’s Cause of Death is about a Druse policeman who was killed in a terrorist attack a decade ago and his brother’s quest to discover the truth about his murder. Wild Kids by Tal Pesses looks at the children of Russian immigrants who create extraordinary animated films. Shaked Goren’s Elifelet is about the ailing mother, now in her nineties, of a soldier killed in the Six Day War, and her granddaughter’s quest to get assistance for her from the National Insurance Institute. Zohar – The Returning by Dani Rosenberg and Yaniv Segalovich is about Uri Zohar, the brilliant director and comedian who left the entertainment world decades ago when he became haredi, and his decision to make a new film that illuminates his own struggles.

There will also be a screening of Assi Dayan’s classic film, Life According to Agfa, which has been digitally restored in 4K scan by the Jerusalem Cinematheque and the Israel Film Archive. The restoration of the 1993 film starring Gila Almagor was done in Israel, the first of the Israel Film Archive projects to be completely done here. The project was supervised by its original cinematographer, Yoav Kosh.

Several other special Israeli projects will be shown. These include a reworking of Avraham Heffner’s Voice Over, a drama about an aging Tel Aviv couple in the Sixties, by a select group of graduates of the Jerusalem Sam Spiegel Film School. Uri Barbash’s Black Honey, The Life and and Poetry of Avraham Sutskever, focuses on this poet’s work and legacy. Tammy Federman’s Cellfish examines the life of the artist Shelley Federman and her struggle to find for artistic expression and meaning.

The festival website is 

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